As part of the 2018 exchange program, a bipartisan delegation of six local-level legislators and political leaders from the United States visited Tokyo, Sagamihara (Kanagawa Prefecture), Hiroshima, and Yamaguchi Prefecture for a series of meetings and roundtables. Over the course of their visit, they met with emerging and senior Diet members from both major parties, prefectural and city assembly members, and officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the US Embassy, as well as policy experts and NGO leaders.
While in Tokyo, the delegation was briefed on a variety of issues, ranging from Japanese security and geopolitical risks, US-Japan trade and technological ties, and women’s empowerment initiatives, to the current state of US-Japan relations. They also participated in a public, off-the- record seminar on the challenges facing local politics in the United States. Outside of Tokyo, the delegation met with the mayor of Hiroshima and members of the Hiroshima Prefectural Assembly and City Council, paid a visit to the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum and spoke with a survivor of the atomic bomb, in addition to visiting local cultural sites and government offices. In Yamaguchi, they met the governor as well as other local politicians and visited schools, a bullet train manufacturing plant, and other sites.
• Young Political Leaders Exchange Program Seminar: Strength in Diversity or Increasing Polarization?: The Challenge of Local Politics in the US
MARLON BROWN, Mayor Pro Tem, Mason City Council (Democrat)
COLLEEN FANNING, Member, Indianapolis City Council (Republican)
FLORENT GROBERG, Director of Veteran Outreach & Eastern Region Community Engagements, Boeing Co. (Republican)
HIBAL KAMAL-GRAYSON, Senior Analyst, International Public Policy, Google (Democrat)
MATT LAMON, Chief of Staff, State Representative J.M. Lozano (Republican)
MARY TINKLER, Treasurer, Charleston County (Democrat)
ALLISON CUNNINGHAM, Delegation Escort; Director of Federal Government Affairs, NGV America