The Guam Nikkei Association was chartered in 2012 with the primary purpose of perpetuating the history and lineages of those born from Japanese ancestry who are presently bona fide residents of Guam; educate the community about the impact and contribution of first generation Japanese and their descendants on the social economic fabric of Guam and to inculcate Japanese culture, art, traditions and history to succeeding generations of Japanese-Chamorro-Guamanians. The Association shall also conduct classes, lectures, demonstrations, performances, seminars, exchange programs, travel to Japan and elsewhere, and organize community events as a means of promoting the purposes of the organization. Additionally, the Guam Nikkei Association shall seek grants, contributions and to operate fund raising activities that will provide the necessary resources to achieve the purposes of the organization.

GNA logo

"Inetnon Taotao Guam Ni' Manggaihaga' Hapones"

P.O. Box 12961 Tamuning, Guam 96931

GNA Group Photo





July 9, 2020

Time: 6:00 p.m.

As our community navigates the COVID-19 pandemic and in our efforts to keep our members safe, the Guam Nikkei Association monthly June meeting will be held via Zoom. Refer to the Zoom link sent by Monica Guzman.

Click here to view the U.S.-Japan Council Newsletter

You may also visit http://guamnikkeinews.blogspot.com for details.

Congratulations, Kimie!

Consul General Snapshots

Farewell Dinner for Consul General Izumi Seki

Akemashite Omedetou Gozaimasu!

Happy New Year! May the year 2020 bring you many blessings filled with much love, joy, peace, and happiness!

Akemashite Omedetou Gozaimasu!
Image source: howtolearn.com

GNA Pope Visit Snapshots - Nov. 26

GNA Pope Visit Snapshots - Nov. 26

40th Japan Autumn Festival

40th Japan Autumn Festival Snapshots

GNA Donation

Thank you for hosting Tokon painters

Thank you for the warm welcome you provided to the Tokon painters 
on February 26, 2019.  Enjoy the following snapshots!


Japan Exchange & Teaching (JET) Program Opportunity

The Japan Exchange & Teaching (JET) Program offers graduates with exciting professional opportunities to work in Japan as Assistant Language Teachers or Coordinators for International Relations. Since 1987, more than 60,000 JET Program participants from over 40 countries have lived and worked in cities, towns and villages throughout Japan.

Interested applicants can visit the JET Program website at http://jetprogramusa.org to review eligibility criteria and application procedures. The application period is open in the fall of each year and selected candidates depart the following spring or summer.

JET Program Roles
There are two positions available:
Assistant Language Teachers (ALTs) work in public elementary, middle and high schools supporting Japanese teachers of English. Beyond using their native English ability to improve students’ English fluency, they serve as cultural ambassadors in their local communities. ALTs make up 90% of all JET Program participants. Their duties can include preparing lesson plans, carrying out classroom activities, providing language training for teachers, leading English clubs and summer camps and participating in events at school and in the community

Coordinators for International Relations (CIRs) work in local government offices promoting internationalization efforts at the community level. From organizing events to teaching adult education classes, CIRs provide essential services to Japanese and foreign residents alike. CIRs must have a high proficiency of Japanese language fluency. CIR duties can include creating, editing and translating official documents, planning and implementing international exchange programs, interpreting for official guests and assisting with language instruction in the community

A Strong Jet Community: During and After
Being active in their Japanese community is a vital part of the JET Program. Through travel, volunteer and social opportunities, JETs find diverse and fun ways to get involved with their local communities and with other JETs. This enriching experience is an important part of being a cultural ambassador while in Japan.

During their tenure as JETs, the Association of JETs (AJET) hosts social, volunteer and professional development activities throughout the year, and provides online resources to support daily work and life in Japan. Additionally, AJET offers JETs valuable resources for learning the Japanese language. Upon returning home from Japan, JETs can get involved with JET Alumni Associations (JETAA) to help with transitioning to life at home. JETAA groups offer valuable opportunities to network professionally and to preserve their connections to Japan and the JET Program.

Benefits: Direct and Indirect
JET Program participants enjoy a well-rounded remuneration package that includes:
·       Airfare to and from Japan
·       Orientations before and after arrival
·       Enrollment in National Health Insurance
·       Minimum ten days of paid vacation
·       Starting annual salary of 3.36 million yen

The JET Program provides a true immersion into Japanese culture. Living and working in the country, JETs gain a rich understanding of Japan so far beyond what one gains as a casual visitor. On many levels, JETs leave the program with so much more than they came in with; they leave Japan fundamentally transformed, with a new understanding of themselves and the world.

Marianas Business Journal Feature

Marianas Business Journal Feature



President: Pauline Okada

Vice President: Catherine Okada Rivera Castro

Secretary: Monika Okada Guzman

Interim Treasurer: Monte Noda Mesa

2018 Lantern Floating Ceremony

2018 Lantern Floating Ceremony

2017 Lantern Floating Ceremony

2017 Lantern Floating Ceremony

Featured GNA Video

2016 Guam Proa Lantern Floating Ceremony Video Available on YouTube

The 2016 Guam Proa Lantern Floating Ceremony (5 minute video) is now available on YouTube titled Guam Proa Lantern Floating Ceremony (GNA). You can also visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OXqoubIyyeo. Enjoy!

Lantern Ceremony Snapshots

2nd Annual 2016 Lantern Floating Ceremony Snapshots
Saturday, September 10, 2016
Governor Joseph Flores Memorial Park, Ypao




kendama approved for use in competition by the Japan Kendama Association
The kendama today are made from a stick with a point at one end, three attached cups, and a ball with a small hole in one end. The cups on either side of the stick are called the big cup and small cup. The ball is connected to the stick by a roughly 40-centimeter (16-inch) piece of string. At the end of the stick is a point with which the player can attempt to spear the ball. At the other end of the stick is a cup called the medium cup.
The game is basically played by tossing the ball and attempting to catch it in one of the cups or to spear it with the point of the stick. Although it may sound simple, there are a nearly unlimited number of specific techniques for doing so.

A recreation of a bilboquet based on historical documents, and a Nichigetsu ball (photo provided by Maruishi Teruki, a member of the board of directors of the Japan Kendama Association)
Many people may think that kendama was invented in Japan, but this is not actually the case. While many different theories exist, there are records indicating that kendama originated in France in the sixteenth century. There are also theories that this game was developed in Greece or China, and the absolute truth is not known.

In France, this game was called bilboquet. Bilmeans "ball," and boquet means "small tree." This word expresses the fact that the game involved playing with a small wooden ball. The game as it was played then was different from what we know as kendama today; there was a large cup and a small cup on either end of a stick, to which a ball was attached with a string. The player would continually toss and catch the ball, alternating between the two cups.

Kendama is believed to have come to Japan via the Silk Road during the Edo period (1603-1868) into Nagasaki, the only Japanese city open to foreign trade at the time. While it may have entered the country around the middle of the Edo period in around 1777 or 1778, the exact date is uncertain. At the time, kendamawas apparently enjoyed by adults as a sort of drinking game. A player who made a mistake was forced to drink more.

As Japan entered the Meiji era (1868-1912), the Ministry of Education introduced kendamain the report on children's education that it put together in 1876, and the game gradually began to catch on among young people. In 1919, during the Taisho era (1912-1926), the forerunner of today's kendama went on sale. It was called Nichigetsu Ball (Sun-and-moon ball), because the ball looked like the sun, while the shape of the shallow carved cups was like a crescent moon. This toy became a huge hit, and from this time into the beginning of the Showa era (1926-1989), a variety of different types of kendama appeared, including a ball attached to a kind of paddle.

After World War II ended in 1945, kendama were sold in candy stores along with other popular toys, such as menko, bidama, and beigoma. In 1975 children's author Fujiwara Issei founded the Japan Kendama Association, which standardized kendama for competitive use and created standardized rules for the purpose of allowing a greater number of people to play the game together the same way.

The Fifteenth Cup of the Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology, which was held in August 2003 (photo provided by the Japan Kendama Association)
With a set of rules and specifications for the equipment in place, kendamabegan to grow in popularity as a competitive sport. In addition to the Award of the Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology, which is given to the winner of a kendama competition for elementary school students, there are tournaments for both students and adults held around the country, andkendama enthusiasts are working to increase the popularity of the game overseas.

The Japan Kendama Association is hopeful that kendama will become known around the world one day, and its members are making efforts to foster international exchange.

GNA Awards Cepeda for Design & Construction of Proa Lantern

Chairman Frank Shimizu, President Monica Guzman, Vice-President Gloria Duenas Cruz, and GNA board members Julia Caguioa and Monte Mesa present JFK sophomore Joshua Cepeda with a Certificate of Appreciation for designing and with the help of his troop, constructing 400 proa lanterns for GNA's 2016 2nd Annual Lantern Floating Ceremony.

Tuesday, 7 July 2020

GNA Meeting - July 9


July 9, 2020

Time: 6:00 p.m.

As our community navigates the COVID-19 pandemic and in our efforts to keep our members safe, the Guam Nikkei Association monthly June meeting will be held via Zoom. Refer to the Zoom link sent by Monica Guzman.

Thursday, 2 July 2020

Congratulations, Kimie Okada, for winning Triple J’s Class of 2020 Tik Tok Contest!

Guam Nikkei Association congratulates Kimie Okada, daughter of GNA members David and Mary Okada, for winning second place in Triple J’s Class of 2020 Tik Tok Contest.  Kimie, a 2020 graduate of Notre Dame High School, won a $1,500 scholarship to a college of her choice, Guam Community College.  Kimie is a descendent of Japanese and CHamoru ancestry, which make up most members of the Guam Nikkei Association.  She has participated in many GNA community activities.  We wish Kimie the best in her endeavors!  She has a bright future ahead of her.  Good luck, Kimie!

Kimie Okada (center) wins a $1,500 scholarship to a college of her choice.  Pictured with her are her proud parents, David and Mary Okada, along with the Triple J. Enterprises Team.

Sunday, 7 June 2020

GNA Meeting - June 11


June 11, 2020

Time: 6:00 p.m.

As our community navigates the COVID-19 pandemic and in our efforts to keep our members safe, the Guam Nikkei Association monthly June meeting will be held via Zoom.  Refer to the Zoom link sent by Monica Guzman.  

Thursday, 9 April 2020

Message from USJC Board of Directors Chair

Message from USJC Board of Directors Chair Phyllis Campbell
It is with profound sadness that I must inform you of the passing of U.S.-Japan Council President Irene Hirano Inouye on April 7, following an extended illness. We extend our deepest condolences to her family.
I know we are all devastated by this news. Irene was a singular figure in U.S.-Japan relations, respected by leaders on both sides of the Pacific as she carried out the mission of USJC. Since the founding of the Council, she infused the organization with her wisdom and entrepreneurial spirit, kept her pulse on every aspect of USJC while keeping her eye on the strategic vision, and managed to approach every challenge with fearlessness and determination.
Back in January when she wrote to the USJC membership about her plans to retire later this year and assist in the Board of Directors’ search for a new CEO, she expressed the hope that her leadership of USJC will have made a lasting contribution to the U.S.-Japan relationship. Serving as president of the U.S.-Japan Council, she wrote, “has been an honor of a lifetime.”
I hope Irene realized that it was actually our honor to have known her. Many of you have your own wonderful memories of Irene from USJC, from her community activities, and from her previous positions, including as the president and founding CEO of the Japanese American National Museum. For me, she was and always will be an inspiration and a model of leadership.
While current circumstances will prevent us from gathering in person to pay tribute to Irene, her family will share with us any plans for a future memorial service after the current global crisis has ended. Her family has asked that, in lieu of flowers or cards, donations be made in Irene’s name to the U.S.-Japan Council.
In addition to her leadership of USJC, Irene’s professional and community activities included serving as Chair and Trustee, Ford Foundation; Chair and Trustee, Kresge Foundation; Chair, Smithsonian Institution Asian Pacific American Center;  Chair of the Advisory Board, Terasaki Center for Japanese Studies, University of California at Los Angeles; Trustee, Washington Center; Trustee, Independent Sector, and member, American Academy of Arts and Sciences; member of the Advisory Board, Center on Philanthropy & Public Policy, Price School of Public Policy, University of Southern California; Chair, Board of Directors of the American Association of Museums; Board Member, National Trust for Historic Preservation; Member, National Board Smithsonian Institution; member, Toyota Corporation’s Diversity Advisory Board; member, Business Advisory Board of Sodexho Corporation; President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities by Presidential appointment; and Chair, California Commission on the Status of Women.
Until a new CEO is named, Irene’s responsibilities at USJC will be supported by Chief Operating Officer Terri Swetnam and Executive Vice President Laura Winthrop Abbot. 
In the meantime, I know you join me in mourning the loss of a most vibrant and iconic woman, who graced us with her friendship and extraordinary leadership.
Very sincerely yours,


Tuesday, 10 March 2020

GNA Meeting - March 12


March 12, 2020

Time: 6:00 p.m.

Tamuning Senior Citizen Center

Tuesday, 4 February 2020

GNA Meeting - Feb. 13


February 13, 2020

Time: 6:00 p.m.

Tamuning Senior Citizen Center