Skype Meeting with Aomori Prefecture’s International Affairs Division 9/27/2013

Dr. Don Hudson, the Chair of the Maine-Aomori Sister-State Advisory Council (MASSAC), and Mr. Henry Prosack, President of Friends of Aomori,  had a Skype video meeting with the Aomori Prefecture International Affairs Division on September 25, 2013.  It was delightful to see members of the International Affairs Division that we had not met previously.

The meeting focused mainly on planning for the 20th Anniversary Celebration.  All parties have agreed that Aomori Prefecture will host a Maine delegation in Japan in 2014!  The main themes of the delegation are planned to consist of ocean energy, fisheries and aquaculture, education, and the 20th Anniversary of the Maine-Aomori sister-state relationship!

We would like to thank Aomori for their understanding of our cancellation of the October visit this year.  We remain dedicated and strong to the cause, and are eager to enhance the sister-state relationship to new heights.  MASSAC and Friends of Aomori look forward to further ties, establish new connections, and provide additional benefit to the citizens of both states.

Skype meetings with the International Affairs Division will be conducted on a regular basis in addition to our routine email communication.

Our website will be updated frequently with the progress and activity of both MASSAC and Friends of Aomori.

Dinner at Consul General Muto’s Residence in Boston

Photo provided by David Clough
Photo provided by David Clough

On July 27, 2013, Consul General Muto from the Consulate of Japan in Boston invited representatives from several Maine-Japan organizations to his personal residence in Boston for dinner.  The occasion turned out to be a remarkable night, as Mr. Muto was a very generous host, the food was exquisite, and the discussion was positive and productive.  Consul General Muto’s receptiveness and engagement in the specific issues pertaining to Maine and each organization was promising for the improvement and expansion of the Maine-Japan organizations.  Mr. Muto explained Japan’s interest in student exchanges between the United States and Japan and Japanese language instruction in U.S. schools.

The Maine visitors were treated with the utmost warmth and courtesy.  Consul General Muto expressed his appreciation for the ongoing efforts to strengthen relations between Maine and Aomori.  He plans on visiting Aomori Governor Mimura and wishes to bring a letter from MASSAC and Friends of Aomori with specific suggestions on how both Maine and Aomori can expand and improve upon their relationship!  The opportunity to address our thoughts to Aomori Governor Mimura is a great privilege!  Thank you!

Friends of Aomori and MASSAC were truly grateful for Consul General Muto’s offer to hand-deliver a message on behalf of both organizations.  The outreach from Mr. Muto represents the positive direction the relationship between Aomori and Maine is heading.  We look forward to further collaboration with the Consulate of Japan and enriching the relationship with Aomori Prefecture we hold dear.  Thank you, Consul General Muto!

Consul General Muto and Mrs. Muto’s Visit to Maine

Consul General Muto and Mrs. Muto from the Consulate of Japan In Boston.  Picture taken at Yosaku Japanese Restaurant on May 10, 2013 by Naoto Kobayashi
Photo taken by Naoto Kobayashi

On May 10, 2013, Japan America Society of Maine, Friends of Shinagawa, Bath-Tsugaru Sister City Program, MASSAC, and Friends of Aomori invited Consul General Muto and Mrs. Muto from the Consulate of Japan in Boston for dinner at Yosaku Japanese Restaurant in Portland, ME.  It was an honor and pleasure to dine and discuss the Maine-Aomori and the Maine-Japan relationships with Consul General Muto!  We look forward to further communication and collaboration with the Consulate in Boston.  Thank you Mr. and Mrs. Muto!  Your visit was delightful!  We hope you visit Maine again!