February 7, 2018 – White House Press Release

As the Honorary Vice Chairwoman for Sister Cities International, Second Lady Karen Pence participated in a meeting and cultural presentation of the Youth Ambassador Exchange, a program through the Houston, Texas-Chiba Sister City Relationship. Mrs. Pence met with the Mayor of Chiba-city, Toshihito Kumagai, five middle school students from last year’s Youth Ambassador Exchange program, and the teacher who served as the chaperone for the exchange program.

The annual Houston-Chiba Sister City Youth Ambassador Program is considered to be one of the most important elements of the sister city relationship. In alternating years, middle school students, along with a chaperone, visit their counterpart’s city. The meeting opened with Mayor Kumagai offering greetings from Chiba-city, Japan and Mrs. Pence offering greetings from the United States.

The meeting included a presentation by the five Japanese students who participated in the Youth Ambassador Exchange program. Mrs. Pence learned about the students’ visit to Houston last year where they met with city officials, attended classes at a Houston middle school, and toured local sights. Through the stories shared, Mrs. Pence gained an understanding of what it is was like for the students to experience home and school life in a culture different from their own.

“The Houston, Texas-Chiba Sister City relationship is a 45-year relationship, bringing together cities and people to experience each other’s culture,” said Mrs. Karen Pence. “It was an honor and pleasure to visit with the Mayor, students, and their chaperone. This was a great opportunity to represent the United States and continue the cultural relationship between our country and Japan.”

After participation in the sister city presentation, Mrs. Pence visted the Hama-rikyu Gardens in Tokyo. She was joined by Mrs. Chikako Aso, wife of Japanese Deputy Prime Minister Taro Aso. Together, they enjoyed the beautiful views of the gardens. Following the tour, the Second Lady met with Mrs. Akie Abe, wife of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

On Thursday, Mrs. Pence will visit the Airman and Family Readiness Center at Yokota Air Base where she will meet with military spouses.

To stay updated on Mrs. Pence’s events, follow her on Twitter at, @SecondLady.

About Houston-Chiba Sister City Relationship

The Houston, Texas—Chiba City, Japan sister city relationship was established in 1972. The Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) invited to Japan a Houston delegation. The delegation approached the Japan Municipal League for International Friendship to ask about partnering with a Japanese city. Houston and Chiba City identified a number of shared interests and characteristics, for example, both are important port cities with strong industrial bases. After consideration and their respective municipal approvals, on October 24, 1972, the cities executed a sister-city agreement.

The official press release can be found here: https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefings-statements/second-lady-karen-pences-visit-japan-shines-light-sister-city-relationship/

EVENTS CALENDAR

< 2018 >

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  • Sister Cities of Houston – April Board Meeting
    5:30 pm-7:00 pm
    2018.04.24

    East West Bank/Conference Room – On the last Tuesday of each month, the Board of Directors of Sister Cities of Houston meet to discuss ongoing business and initiatives. The Board is composed of five elected members of the Executive Committee, four at large board members and one ex officio representative from each Sister City organization.

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  • Houston Grampian Association – OTC Breakfast 2018
    8:00 am-11:00 am
    2018.04.28

    The Houston Grampian Association will host a breakfast to celebrate the 50th Anniversary year of the OTC. This breakfast is one of the opening events of the OTC week.

    The breakfast will be held on Saturday, April 28, 2018 (8am – 9 am Coffee & Social Networking & at 9 am Breakfast will be served) at The Hilton Post Oak, 2001 Post Oak Blvd, Houston, TX 77056.

    Tables of 10 Sponsorship is $1000, Tables of 5 Sponsorship is $500, Individual seats are $60 for non members and $50 for members.

    The main speaker this year is –

    Gordon McIntosh – and he will talk about the ever changing Oil & Gas Market across the World.
    He is the current Deputy Minister of Natural Resources for the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada. He was previously Director of Aberdeen City Council from 1995 until retirement in August of 2016 (in Enterprise, Planning and Infrastructure), Past Vice Chairman Grampian Houston Association, Burgess of the City of Aberdeen, Past Director of Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Center, Visiting Professor – Robert Gordon University Director AREG (Aberdeen Renewable Energy Group), Director Petroleum Research Newfoundland and Labrador.

    Other speakers are –

    Susan Schneider of Houston Baptist University will speak about the yearly Nurse Exchange Program with Houston Baptist and Aberdeen Robert Gordon’s Universities which was founded in 1982. 2017 and 2018 exchange nurses will be in attendance.
    Harry Gee, President of Sister Cities Houston will speak about the importance of Sister Cities in a Worldwide Business. There are 18 Sister Cities and Gampian, Scotland was the 5th City to join Houston’s partnership in 1979

    Russian Oprah Singer – Elena Fray – will open the Breakfast with the US National Anthem

    Scottish Piper will perform as people arrive

    McCallum is the whisky sponsor.

    Money raised will benefit the yearly Nurse Exchange Program, they are a 501(C)3 charity.

    For more information, please contact the Houston Grampian Association President, Lorna Ramsay at: lornaramsay@kw.com

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