Aya Takahashi was born and raised in 1989 in Sendai and is now currently a share business manager. Being a high school graduate with no work experience, Aya experienced onset depression in addition to being triple handicapped and in turn this caused her to despair for her future.
“Without having to depend on yearly wages for one’s old age”
In order to reach this goal, she diligently studied investments in real estate properties. As her first step, she began a business of repurposing normal houses into share houses for international students.
Monitoring and managing her business through SNS and after 1 year, a total of 6 properties has been repurposed into guest and share houses.
Currently, she is employed by a real estate company as half salary employee and half freelance in utilizing rooms, spaces, etc. as a sharable living space for people to live out their lives.
Associate Professor at Tohoku University
Dr. Gregory Trencher is an associate professor at Tohoku University specializing in energy policy and smart cities in Japan. A graduate of the University of Tokyo, he has spent 10-years in Japan and recently completed a two-year post at Clark University in the U.S.A. Not intimidated by the high walls of other academic disciplines, Gregory delves regularly into the knowledge and worldviews of various academic fields such as quantum physics, ecology, religion, philosophy and astronomy to gain new scientific insights into the world around us. In addition to scientific publications, he shares his thoughts and findings through Internet articles and citizen education workshops.
Producer for Go!Go!Tohoku!!
Born and raised in Canberra, Australia, Jess first fell in love with Japan on a high-school trip and has never looked back. After completing a combined degree in Asia-Pacific Studies and International Relations at the Australian National University, she moved to the Tohoku region as a participant of the JET Programme, working as an Assistant Language Teacher for Namie Town in Fukushima Prefecture. Inspired by the incredible natural beauty and local culture of Fukushima, she is currently pursuing a career in tourism media, working as a producer for Go!Go!Tohoku!!, an online tourism promotion initiative administered by Sendai Television.
IT Enginner at Microsoft
Kenichiro Nakamura is an IT enginner in Microsoft for 10+ years, who has a strong passion for the latest technologies. With this passion, he contributes to many projects by writing code or managing projects as a volunteer, sharing konwledge via technical blogs, providing presentations, and running technical communities such as Tokyo .NET Developer meetup. He also has a passion for people, and he runs the advisory team in Microsoft to support one of the TOMODACHI programs run by USJC.
Born in Sendai, Japan, in 1977. Went to Kiribati for high school in 1993 and continued to remain there after the graduation. Naturalized in Kiribati in 2000, being the first naturalized Japanese I-Kiribati. He has been living in Japan since 2011. Founder and President of Japan Kiribati Association (JAKA), and Former Honorary Consul of the Republic of Kiribati for Japan/Advisor to Kiribati Ambassador to Japan. He has been actively engaging into advocacy on the impact of climate change and global warming to Kiribati in human dimension in Japan and other countries.
Senior Advisor to the President of Tohoku University
Marty Kuehnert, a 1968 Stanford University graduate, has spent most of his adult life in Japan, working in the sports business and education. Kuehnert helped pioneer the sports licensing business and sports bars in Japan, was the first foreign sportscaster on Japanese TV, and the first foreigner to be the GM of a Japanese pro baseball team, the Rakuten Eagles. On the educational front Kuehnert has been a professor at Waseda University, Sendai University and Tohoku University. Additionally, the California native has been the Vice President of Sendai University and Senior Advisor to the President of Tohoku University.
17-years-old ukulele prodigy, RIO has performed at music festivals throughout Asia, in notable U.S.A. venues as far away as New York City and Honolulu and well known in the TEDx community. He captured a 1st place at Amateur Night at Apollo Theater in New York City, also received the Award of Excellence at the Diner's Club Social Jazz Session in 2013-14. His first album “I~around ~” got nominated for the 39th Na Hoku Hanohano Award known as Grammy Awards in Hawaii and also an official KAMAKA Artist.
Physician at Tohoku University
Dr. Hara received a M.D. degree in 2009 from Tohoku University and engaged in junior & senior resident in otolaryngology at Tohoku University Hospital and the cooperative hospitals. His major research interests include treatments of dysphagia. In 2016, he became a fellow of Japan bio-design, which is an entrepreneur education program for medical device innovation. Currently, he is engaging R&D of a novel medical device while working as an ENT doctor.