Vancouver, Wednesday, June 5, 2007. The Canada-Japan Society of British Columbia today elected its officers and board for the 2007 – 2008 term. At the 47th Annual General Meeting of the Society, John Powles, managing partner of Pacific Bizlinks Trade Consultants Inc., was elected president. Powles was president of the Society from 1998 to 2003, Re-elected to the executive were vice presidents Steven J. Archer (Canada Kura Saké Company), James, LeMoine (Bull, Houser & Tupper), John Montgomery (J. Montgomery & Associates) and Hiroshi Yamamoto (Colliers International). New to the executive is vice president Bryan Dunn (Davis and Company). Russell Mark (RM Catalysts) is the immediate past president. Consul General for Japan, Seiichi Otsuka, is the Honorary Chairman of the Society and John Ellis (President of the Society in 1968-69) is the Honorary Vice President. Ex officio vice presidents representing other Canada-Japan organizations and governments are Robert Banno (National Nikkei Museum and Heritage Society), Michael Carter (Province of British Columbia), Shinji Kowase and Takashi Kuriyama (Japanese Business Association of Vancouver – Konwakai), William McMichael (Vancouver Mokuyokai Society) and Wayne Robson (Government of Canada).
Newly elected to the Board of Directors are Masayuki Izaki (Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi), Hiroyuki Matsuoka (JETRO-Vancouver) and Matthew Yoshitake (International House Vancouver). Re-elected to the Board of Directors were William Andrew (RBC Dominion Securities), Laureen Davies (Air Canada), Nathan Ganapathi (Ganapathi and Company), David Graham (Pacific Span Ventures), Bill Gruenthal (KRG Insurance Brokers), Frank Hanano (F Y Hanano Law Office), Arthur Hara (Asia Pacific Trade Council), Mitsuo Hayashi (National Nikkei Museum and Heritage Centre Society), Masaaki Kobayashi (Daishowa-Marubeni International Ltd.) , Kazuko Komatsu (Pacific Western Brewing), Shinji Kowase (Mitsubishi Canada), Takashi Kuriyama (Sumitomo Metal Mining America), Robert MacKinnon (Mizuho Corporate Bank), Angela Nakamura-Hollinger (CeCan Business Development), Brian Pendleton (Langara College), Blair Qualey (The Vancouver Board of Trade), Manabu Sato (Japan Airlines), Jason Scharfe (.Marsh Canada), Gary Smallenberg (CAPTIN), Larry Sproul (Quest University Canada), John Tak (Hydrogen & Fuel Cells Canada), Ryuga Wada (Mitsui & Co Canada), David Wallace (D.H. Wallace & Associates) and Tomomi Yamamoto (Marubeni Canada). Past presidents Robert Fairweather (International Financial Centre Vancouver), Maurice Fellis (Westward Shipping), Poul Hansen (Sperling Hansen Associates), Jack McKeown and Ed Odishaw (Austpro Energy Corporation) round out the Board.
Originally formed in 1928 as the Japan Society of Vancouver, it is the oldest Asian bilateral association in Canada. It was reorganized in 1959 and the current name was adopted in 1992. The goal of the Society is “to encourage and increase the opportunities in British Columbia for the extension of friendship and understanding between the people of Canada and the people of Japan.” Today, the Canada-Japan Society of British Columbia serves a corporate and individual membership of 250.
The Society is always ready to take advantage of special opportunities as they arise. The Society provides venues for senior politicians, influential business executives or journalists from Canada or Japan passing through Vancouver, to meet and address the membership. These events are often co-sponsored with the Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada, The Vancouver Board of Trade, the Japanese Businessmen’s Association, the Vancouver Mokuyokai Society and the local universities. We have hosted prime ministers, premiers, governors, ministers, the heads of major corporations in both Canada and Japan, as well as writers and editors from some of both countries’ leading publications. In this way, the Society is able to provide its membership with continuing updates on public policy developments, political-economic news and business trends on both sides of the Pacific. The Society provides a unique place to network across the two cultures, where one can get to know counterparts and clients not just on a business basis, but on a personal level as well.
WWW.CANADAJAPANSOCIETY.BC.CA, currently being updated, is the focus of efforts to bring together information of interest to Canadian and Japanese members. The website has attracted business enquiries from around the world. For information on society membership, on Japan and Canada as well as up-to-date events of interest in the community, be sure to consult the Society’s website and events calendar.