Call for Applications for the 2019 TOMODACHI-Mitsui & Co. Leadership Program

Deadline: 04 April 2019 ( for American delegation); 18 April 2019 ( for Japanese delegation)
Open to: Young Japanese and American professionals (up to target age 40)
Costs: Transportation, hotel, and group meals will all be provided


The TOMODACHI Initiative is a public-private partnership between the U.S.-Japan Council (Japan) and the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo, with support from the Government of Japan. Born out of support for Japan’s recovery from the Great East Japan Earthquake, TOMODACHI invests in the next generation of Japanese and American leaders through educational and cultural exchanges as well as leadership programs. The initiative seeks to foster a “TOMODACHI Generation” of young American and Japanese leaders.

Generously funded by Mitsui & Co., Ltd., and entering its seventh year, the TOMODACHI-Mitsui & Co. Leadership Program contributes to the building of a “TOMODACHI Generation” of creative thinkers and driven achievers.

Selected through a competitive process, young American and Japanese leaders who are professional, geographic, and gender diverse will visit each other’s countries, meeting influential individuals and prominent leaders. Post program, participants are expected to contribute to further strengthening U.S.-Japan relations as next generation leaders who understand and appreciate cultural differences and possess critical globally-oriented skills and mindsets.


  • Create a professional network among rising leaders in Japan and the United States that could lead to new, innovative partnerships and businesses.
  •  Motivate young American and Japanese leaders to engage in and contribute to furthering U.S.-Japan relations.
  •  Raise awareness of important policies and issues relevant to the United States and Japan among next generation leaders in both countries.

Ten (10) American and ten (10) Japanese young professionals will travel to each other’s country for one week to engage as a group and meet with established and up-and-coming leaders from business and government.

The American delegation will travel to Fukushima Prefecture and Tokyo, and the Japanese delegation will travel to Silicon Valley in California and Washington, D.C.

Guided by the 2019 program theme, “Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Leadership,” the delegations will explore innovation, new technology, and industrial development in the context of U.S.-Japan relations.

Business executives, government officials, academics, and non-profit leaders will share their experiences and insights during the program. Through interactive and engaging sessions, participants will discuss issues, formulate new ideas together, and nurture lifelong friendships. The trip also enables delegates to gain greater understanding of multicultural America and the unique qualities of Japanese society, further strengthening the bridge between these two cultures.


  • Demonstrated leadership potential
  • Professional accomplishments in career field
  • Connection to U.S.-Japan activities (preferably including through profession)
  • Young professional (up to target age 40)
  • English proficiency for Japanese applicants

Candidates who do not meet all of the above criteria may still be considered if they demonstrate outstanding qualifications. The U.S.-Japan Council will make final selection of a diverse set of delegates, taking into consideration applications and recommendations made by various government, private and corporate advisors.


 Transportation, hotel, and group meals will all be provided


Please fill out the online application from this link, and send a resume to


For further information about the TOMODACHI-Mitsui & Co. Leadership Program or questions about the application process, please contact either Noriko Litwin at or Wes Stockstill at


The official web-page.