Keizai Events

25th Anniversary Shinnenkai Reception

Event Overview

Please join us in celebrating Keizai Society’s 25th anniversary at our Shinnenkai on Friday, January 30th at 6:00pm at the Palo Alto Hills Golf and Country Club. Keizai Society Lifetime achievement recipients: Nobuyuki Idei, Yoshi Akiba, Ambassador Michael Armacost, Dr. Koichi (Ko) Nishimura, and Prof. Daniel Okimoto will discuss their forecast of the next 25 years of US-Japan relations

We will be performing our traditional Kagamiwari (sake barrel “breaking”) ceremony. The Consul General of Japan, Mr.
Masato Watanabe is expected to lead this tradition.

The Keizai Society’s theme for this year is “2015: The Power of Innovation to Shape the Future: New Vitality in US-Japan Business.”

Please join the Keizai Society as it presents programs throughout 2015 designed not only to help us keep our finger on the pulse of events but to contribute to those events as well.

Start off 2015 by strengthening your existing business relationships and forging new ones. Bring lots of business cards to exchange, including one to enter the drawing for the exciting door prizes. We look forward to celebrating 2015 with you at our 25th anniversary Shinnenkai.

Due to the anticipated number of attendees, early registration online ( is highly recommended. We cannot guarantee that there will be room for walk-ins.



Founder and CEO of Quantum Leaps Corporation

Mr. Idei is founder and CEO of Quantum Leaps Corporation, a management consultancy company established in 2006. He is also president of Asia Innovators’ Initiative, a non-profit organization registered in Japan.

Mr. Idei currently serves as director of Accenture (since February 2006), Baidu (since June 2007), Freebit Co., Ltd. (since June 2007), Lenovo Group (since September 2011), and Monex Group (since June 2013).

Mr. Idei joined Sony Corporation in 1960. After devoting himself to establishing overseas operations in Switzerland and France, he took on leading positions of the audio and video businesses before being appointed a board director in 1989. During his tenure as top management at Sony, as president from 1995 to 2000 and as chairman and Group CEO from 2000 to 2005, he created new IT and networked businesses, such as the VAIO computer, mobile products with Ericsson, Internet service businesses leveraging Sony’s entertainment contents, and others, to transform Sony into a unique networked “AVIT” company.


Ambassador Armacost began his career in academia, as a professor of government at Pomona College. In 1969, he was awarded a White House Fellowship, and was assigned to the Secretary and Deputy Secretary of State. Following a stint on the State Department policy planning and coordination staff, he became a special assistant to the U.S. ambassador in Tokyo from 1972-74, his first foreign diplomatic post. Thereafter, he held senior Asian affairs and international security posts in the State Department, Defense Department, and the National Security Council. From 1982 to 1984, he served as U.S. Ambassador to the Philippines, and was a key force in helping the country undergo a nonviolent transition to democracy. In 1989, President George Bush tapped him to become ambassador to Japan, considered one of the most important and sensitive U.S. diplomatic posts abroad.


Founder, Royse Law Firm

Yoshi Akiba is a true entrepreneurial success story whose triumph, from very humble beginnings, was driven by a deep passion for connecting with people and finding a new way, and a profound desire to give back to the community. Yoshi, orphaned during World War II, came to the U.S. to study dance and music. In 1973, Yoshi and her two best friends were a trio of struggling students who started a small North Berkeley Japanese restaurant with the name Yoshi’s. It was the combination of artistry, business sense, and spiritual beliefs which contributed to their success. Over the next nearly 40 years, Yoshi’s built itself into one of the world’s most respected venues with jazz and Japanese cuisine. In October, 2011, Kodansha published her memoir “We Can Do It.”


Former Chairman of the Board, President and Chief Executive Officer of Solectron Corporation

(Retired January 2003)

Dr. Koichi Nishimura retired from Solectron Corporation in January 2003 where he oversaw the corporate, strategic and emerging business units worldwide. He helped transform Solectron from a regional entity into the world’s largest and most profitable electronics manufacturing services (EMS) company.

Under his leadership, Solectron won the prestigious Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award twice – in 1997 and 1991 – after infusing the rigorous certification criteria into the company’s corporate culture and strategy. Solectron is the first company to win the Baldrige Award for Manufacturing twice in the history of the national program.

Nishimura joined Solectron in 1988 as chief operating officer and in 1990 he became president. In 1992, he was appointed chief executive officer. He was elected chairman of the board in 1996.

Before coming to Solectron, Nishimura worked at IBM Corporation for 23 years, where he held a number of senior management positions in the company’s disk file design, technology and manufacturing divisions.

Nishimura currently serves on the Stanford University Materials Science and Engineering Advisory Board and is the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Nikkei Leadership Network. He has served on the board of directors of Investor AB of Sweden, AT&T Wireless, Fortinet Corporation, the Board of Trustee of the Santa Fe Institute, the International Advisory Board of the Economic Development Board of Singapore, and an Advisor to the CEO of NTT DOCOMO Inc.. He is a former member and chairman of Santa Clara University’s Leavey School of Business, a former vice president of the Malcolm Baldrige Foundation, a former board member of the Tech Museum of Innovation in San Jose, California and a former member and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Silicon Valley Manufacturing Group. In 2001, Nishimura was the recipient of the Silicon Valley Manufacturing Group’s Lifetime Achievement Award. He was recognized in 2000 with the Community Service Award from the National Conference for Community and Justice, Silicon Valley Region, and with the Eugene Merchant Manufacturing Medal from the Society of Manufacturing Engineering. He is a member of the Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame.

In addition, Nishimura is known within the Japanese-American community for his past support of the U.S. Japan Business Council, Japanese Western U.S. Association, Japanese American Citizenship League, Asian Americans for Community Involvement, Asian Law Alliance and the Yu-Ai Kai Senior Community Center in San Jose.

Nishimura holds a doctorate in material science and engineering from Stanford University, and master’s and bachelor’s degrees in electrical engineering from San Jose State University. He is a senior member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers and the Society of Manufacturing Engineers.

Professor Daniel I. Okimoto

Chairman of the Sterling Stamos Global Institute and Asia Strategy Group

Professor Daniel I. Okimoto is the Chairman of the Sterling Stamos Global Institute and Asia Strategy Group, as well as a Partner at Sterling Stamos. He is Professor Emeritus of Political Science, Senior Fellow of the Institute for International Studies, and Director Emeritus and Co-Founder of the Shorenstein Asia/Pacific Research Center at Stanford University.

During his 30-plus years at Stanford, Professor Okimoto played a central role in establishing several interdisciplinary programs and research institutions, including the Stanford Institute for International Studies, the East Asian Studies Program, the Shorenstein Forum on Asia Pacific Studies, the Asia/Pacific Scholars Program, and the Stanford Center in Japan. He has taught at the Stockholm School of Economics and the International Research Center in Japanese Studies in Kyoto, Japan.

The Shorenstein Asia/Pacific Research Center, which Professor Okimoto co-founded, is a leading center for scholarly research, public policy, and policy outreach. He has been Vice-Chairman of the Japan Committee of the National Research Council at the National Academy of Sciences and a member of the Advisory Council of the Department of Politics at Princeton University.

In 2004, he received the Japanese Foreign Minister’s Commendation in recognition of his contributions to US-Japan relations during the 150th anniversary celebration of bilateral relations.

In 2007, he was awarded the Order of the Rising Sun with Goldray Neck Ribbon by the Japanese government, the highest honor that can be conferred on a non-Japanese.

Professor Okimoto serves on several Advisory Boards and Boards of Directors, including the Development Bank of Japan, the Queen Lili’uokalani Trust, and the San Diego Padres.

Professor Okimoto earned a BA from Princeton University, received an MA from Harvard University, and earned a PhD (Political Science) from the University of Michigan. He is the author and editor of numerous books and articles, including Between MITI and the Market: Japanese Industrial Policy for High Technology and co-editor, The Political Economy of Japan and Competitive Edge: The Semiconductor Industry in the U.S. and Japan.



RECEPTION 6:00 P.M. – 6:45 P.M.
PROGRAM: 6:45 P.M. – 10 P.M.
Palo Alto Hills Golf and Country Club
3000 Alexis Drive, Palo Alto, CA 94304

$65: Registration by Jan 26, 2015 (11:00 pm)
$90: Late Registration by January 29 (12:00 pm)
$125: Walk-ins (Subject to room capacity / cash or check only)

Due to the anticipated number of attendees, early registration online ( is highly recommended. We cannot
guarantee that there will be room for walk-ins.

Food, including sushi and hors d’oeuvres, will be served.