Conference on Cultural and Educational Interchange (CULCON) > News/Blog > Uncategorized > FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: JUSFC and U.S. CULCON Appoint Mr. Charles D. Lake II as Chair.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: JUSFC and U.S. CULCON Appoint Mr. Charles D. Lake II as Chair.

**Japanese Follows English**

Washington, D.C. May 10, 2024: The Japan-U.S. Friendship Commission (JUSFC) and the U.S. CULCON Panel are pleased to announce the appointment of new Chair, Mr. Charles D. Lake II. His term is effective May 15, 2024.

Mr. Lake is Representative Director and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Aflac Life Insurance Japan Ltd. and President of Aflac International. He currently serves as an independent outside director on the board of Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group, Inc. and as a director on the board of the Peterson Institute for International Economics. In addition, among other roles, he previously served as the chairman of the board of the U.S.-Japan Business Council and as an outside director on the board of the Tokyo Stock Exchange, Japan Post Holdings Co., Ltd., and Tokyo Electron, Ltd. Before joining Aflac in 1999, Mr. Lake practiced law in Washington, D.C. and served as director of Japan affairs and special counsel at the office of the U.S. Trade Representative in the Executive Office of the President.

“I am thrilled to serve as Chair of the Commission and CULCON during this critical time in world affairs and look forward to working with my fellow commissioners and building upon the excellent work done under Chair Sheila Smith’s leadership. In my long experience working with Japan, I learned the vital importance of people-to-people interactions and personal ties that go beyond organizations. To develop long lasting friendships, we must first seek a strong understanding of each other’s culture, history, and language, which can help foster a robust and healthy U.S.-Japan relationship. I am grateful for the opportunity to contribute to the Commission and CULCON’s efforts to take the U.S.-Japan relationship to the next level,” Mr. Lake remarked on his appointment.

Both JUSFC and CULCON extend their deep appreciation to Dr. Sheila A. Smith, outgoing Chair, for her dedicated service.

Dr. Smith said, “Today the world looks far different for our citizens, especially our youth. Optimism about our shared future with Japan could not be stronger and yet we cannot take that future for granted. The U.S.-Japan partnership cannot be put on automatic pilot. We must adapt. Our next generation will need our support if they are to increase knowledge, develop 21st century skills and form lasting bonds, both personal and professional, that will carry us forward. The Japan-U.S. Friendship Commission and CULCON remain vital to this investment in the people that will lead us into the future. It has been a privilege to work with so many on the Commission and on the Japanese panel of CULCON who are similarly dedicated to this goal. I leave knowing that both organizations will be led by someone who has spent his life building bridges between our two nations.  I am incredibly pleased that Charles D. Lake, II, will assume leadership of JUSFC and the U.S. Panel of CULCON effective May 15, 2024.   I know that he will bring his incredible vision for, and dedication to, the U.S.-Japan relationship to strengthen and deepen people-to-people ties.”

“Mr. Lake’s proven track record of strategic leadership and dedication to excellence as well as his experience in business and policymaking will be invaluable to the mission-focused work of JUSFC and CULCON. I look forward to working with him to lead these two organizations,” said Paige Cottingham-Streater, Secretary-General, CULCON and Executive Director of the Japan-U.S. Friendship Commission.

The Japan-U.S. Friendship Commission is a federal grantmaking agency. Annually, the agency awards institutional grants to support Japan Studies, public policy programs and educational and cultural exchange. CULCON is a binational advisory panel that meets biannually in alternating years between Japan and the United States, serves to elevate and strengthen the vital cultural and educational foundations of the U.S.-Japan relationship, and to strengthen connections between U.S. and Japan leadership in those fields.


チャールズ D・レイクII氏を


ワシントンD.C.、2024年5月10日:日米友好基金(Japan-US Friendship Commission :JUSFC)は新委員長として、日米文化教育交流会議(The United States-Japan Conference on Cultural and Educational Interchange:CULCON(カルコン))米国側パネルは新議長として、チャールズ D・レイクII氏を選任いたしました。同氏の就任は2024年5月15日付です。

レイク氏は、アフラック生命保険株式会社代表取締役会長、取締役会議長およびアフラック・インターナショナル取締役社長を兼務しています。また、株式会社三井住友フィナンシャルグループ独立社外取締役およびピーターソン国際経済研究所(The Peterson Institute for International Economics)の理事も務めています。その他、米日経済協議会(The U.S.-Japan Business Council)の会長、東京証券取引所、日本郵政株式会社および東京エレクトロン株式会社の独立社外取締役等の役職を歴任しました。1999年のアフラック入社以前は、ワシントンD.C.において弁護士として活動した他、米国通商代表部(USTR)にて、日本部長および次席通商代表付特別顧問等を務めました。


シーラ・スミス博士は、「今日の私たち、特に若者にとって、世界はこれまでとは大きく異なって見えます。私たちは皆、日本との絆が将来に向かってさらに強くなるという希望を持ち続けていますが、そうした未来は、当然に迎えられるものではありません。日米両国のパートナーシップはただ見守っているだけで発展するものではなく、変化に適応し続けなければなりません。私たちの関係の進展に向け、次の世代が知見を広め、これからの時代に必要なスキルを身につけ、公私にわたる永続的な信頼関係を育んでいくために、日米両国が支援していく必要があります。両国の未来を担う次世代の人材に投資していくうえで、日米友好基金と日米文化教育交流会議は、引き続きかけがえのない存在です。こうした目標の実現に向けて思いを一つに献身的に尽力している日米友好基金、また日米文化教育交流会議日本側パネルの多くの方々とともに働くことができたことを、大変光栄に思います。 私の退任後は、これまで生涯にわたって日米の懸け橋となってきたチャールズ D・レイクII氏が、2024年5月15日に日米友好基金の次期委員長および日米文化教育交流会議米国側パネルの次期議長に就任し、両組織を率いてくれることを心から嬉しく思います。そして、レイク氏の日米関係に関する卓越したビジョンのもと、日米両国の人的な結びつきをこれまで以上に強く、そして深いものにするために力を尽くしてくれるものと確信しています」と述べています。




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