The Journal The Authority on Global Business in Japan

At the end of each year, the American Chamber of Commerce in Japan (ACCJ) honors members who have shown extraordinary dedication. On December 17 at Tokyo American Club, ACCJ President Sachin N. Shah presented certificates to those selected as Leader of the Year and Volunteer of the Year from the ACCJ’s Tokyo, Chubu, and Kansai chapters.

“This year has been marked by significant work from leaders and members across the chamber at an all-important time for the ACCJ,” Shah said to open the festivities. “Tonight’s winners have been nominated because they have earned the respect and endorsement of their fellow leaders and have been selected based on a vote by the board who had to choose between many worthy nominees.”

LEADER OF THE YEAR (TOKYO)

John Carlson
As chair of the ACCJ Healthcare Committee, Carlson has led a number of activities, many requiring cross-committee and cross-organizational collaboration. He has also actively supported the ACCJ’s new Healthcare and Retirement pillar to develop a multiple-stakeholder blueprint for the future sustainability of Japan’s healthcare and retirement system.

LEADER OF THE YEAR (TOKYO)

Thomas Shockley
The energetic approach Shockley brings to his engagement with the chamber is widely recognized, in particular for his commitment to the development of younger members. His efforts on the Workforce Productivity Advocacy pillar have generated many creative ideas to elevate the profile of the pillar’s efforts across the chamber and its events.

LEADER OF THE YEAR (CHUBU)

Britt Creamer
As leader of one of the chamber’s flag­­ship events, Creamer has helped raise ¥8 million for chari­table causes and united many members, their friends, and families, under­scoring the ACCJ’s sense of respon­si­­bility and commitment to the community. He has brought energy to the Chubu chapter and is widely recognized and appreciated for helping others succeed.

LEADER OF THE YEAR (KANSAI)

MaryAnne Jorgensen
As chair of the ACCJ-Kansai Women in Business Committee for the past four years, Jorgensen has helped develop next-generation leaders, many of whom have won Leader and Volunteer of the Year honors themselves. And since its launch in 2015 under her leadership, the Kansai Women in Business Summit has raised the bar for content and execution.

VOLUNTEER OF THE YEAR (TOKYO)

James Fink
Responding as a member of the Commu­nity Service Advisory Council to a need to stabilize funding for the ACCJ’s charitable activities, Fink has made a big difference in the chamber’s operations. He also helped renegotiate the ACCJ’s office lease and his presentation of options to the Board of Governors is a model of how the ACCJ should present its financial issues.

VOLUNTEER OF THE YEAR (CHUBU)

Mark Hosang
Working energetically and enthusiastically to spearhead the Young Professionals Forum, Hosang represents an important constituency of the ACCJ’s membership. He has brought his energy to the ACCJ-Chubu Business Programs Committee as well, often managing the meeting minutes and other tasks. He is also an avid evangelist for the chamber.

VOLUNTEER OF THE YEAR (KANSAI)

Royi Akavia
As the driving force behind the ACCJ-Kansai Community Service Committee’s Art for Charity events, Akavia has helped raise more than ¥400,000 for Food Bank Kansai through donations and the sales of art. His hard work and enthusiasm have created a strong following of members and guests interested in art and in supporting local charity.