The Accession of the Emperor Naruhito and Arrival of Reiwa Era Celebrated in Chicago
• In his opening remarks, Consul General Naoki Ito said
that he was very pleased to be able to celebrate the new Emperor Naruhito’s
accession and the start of the new era with the people who have been contributing
to strengthen Japan-Midwest relationship.
• On behalf of Gov. Pritzker, Margo Markopoulos, Director of Office of Trade & Investment, Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, said, “There are more Japanese companies located here in Illinois than any other countries, and we look forward to working together to build stronger bonds between Illinois and Japan in this new era and beautiful harmony.” Then she stated Pritzker’s messages, “My administration has committed to furthering our relationship between Illinois and Japan. I hope to see our partnerships strengthen and grow years to come.”
• Jordan Miller, Deputy Director of Strategic Partnerships
& Global Affairs in the Office of Mayor Emanuel, brought the Mayor’s
message, and Andrea Zopp, President and CEO of World Business Chicago,
spoke about the relationship between Chicago and Japan.
• Leo Melamedo congratulated the accession of the new
Emperor and said, “I must say that all my life comes to Japan.” He is
one of about 6,000 Jews who were saved from Nazis by 2,000 transit visas
issued by Chiune Sugihara, former Consul General of Japan to Lithuania.
• Chairman Kato explained the name of the new era “Reiwa”
saying that the name was a quote from Manyoshu, the oldest collection
of Japanese poetry compiled approximately 1200 years ago and had meaning
that culture was born and natured to people dwelling closely with each
other in beautiful harmony.
• Chairman Kato gave a special seminar about “Japan’s
Economy: Current Situation and Challenges & the Japan-Illinois Partnership”
on the same day at the Union League Club of Chicago. An article of the
seminar will be printed in the next issue of the Chicago Shimpo.
Attendees make toast for the New Emperor and arrival of Reiwa Era.
From left: Katsunobu Kato, Chairman to the General Council of the Liberal Democratic Party, Andrea Zopp, President and CEO of World Business Chicago, Margo Markopoulos, Leo Melamedo, Chairman Emeritus of CME Group, Director of Office of Trade & Investment, Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, and Consul General Naoki Ito