1997 US Congressional Staff Delegation

March 30–April 6, 1997

The 13th US Congressional staff delegation comprising nine members visited Japan on March 30-April 6, 1997, at a time when foreign policy experts were troubled by developments in Asia Pacific. Accordingly, the US-Japan security relationship and the challenges posed by a Japanese economy in recession were priorities on the program agenda. Speakers to the delegation included Masashi Nishihara, an international relations expert with the National Defense Academy; Ira Wolf, an executive with Eastman Kodak, Asia-Pacific Ltd., and former assistant US trade representative; Glen Fukushima, an executive with AT&T Japan; Koichi Kato, secretary-general of the Liberal Democratic Party; and senior members of three opposition parties. The delegation also met executives of major Japanese corporations, gaining a sense of the difference in opinions between the corporate and government sectors on fiscal reform. Business leaders expressed particular interest in the delegation’s views on the state of American politics, and a panel discussion at the Keidanren (Japan Federation of Economic Organizations) featuring the Congressional staff delegation attracted nearly 50 executives.


DAN BOB, Special Assistant for Asian and Pacific Affairs to Sen. William Roth (R-Delaware), Chairman of the Senate Finance Committee

AMY DUNATHAN, Legislative Assistant for International Trade to Sen. John Chafee (R- Rhode Island), Chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee

MICHAEL ERLANDSON, Chief of Staff to Rep. Martin Sabo (D-Minnesota)

BOB FOUST, Legislative Director and Foreign Policy Adviser to Sen. Kent Conrad (D-North Dakota)

BETSY HARKINS, Legislative Assistant to Sen. Thad Cochran (R-Mississippi)

MARSHA McCRAVEN, Administrative Assistant to Rep. Bennie Thompson (R-Mississippi)

TERRI SMITH, Legislative Assistant to Sen. Robert Byrd (D-West Virginia); Associate Staff, Senate Appropriations Committee

BOB VAN WICKLIN, Legislative Assistant to Rep. Amo Houghton (R-New York)

JOHN WOODARD, Chief of Staff to Rep. Brian Bilbray (R-California)