Urasenke North America Advisory Committee Convenes at Urasenke Headquarters
The Urasenke Center building at Urasenke Headquarters

In terms of its activities outside Japan, Urasenke headquarters divides the world map into five world regions. The North America region covers the USA and Canada, and the Urasenke New York Branch serves as its Head Office. It has an advisory committee, whose seven members were chosen at the Urasenke Tankokai North America Representatives' Convention held in Los Angeles in 2015. The members, and their current positions within their respective Tankokai associations, are as follows (alphabetical order):

Andre GAUVIN (President, Tankokai Quebec Association)
Kimiko GUNJI (President, Tankokai Urbana-Champaign Association)
Robert HORI (President, Tankokai Los Angeles Association), who serves as head of the advisory body
Mioko MILLER (Chief of Administration, Tankokai Washington D.C. Association)
Wayne MUROMOTO (Previous Chief of Administration, Tankokai Hawaii Association)
Hiroko NABETA (Chief of Administration, Tankokai Dallas/Forth Worth Association and Tankokai Michigan Association)
Glenn PEREIRA (Chief of Administration, Tankokai Boston Association)

On July 4 this year (2019), all seven of the members convened at Urasenke Headquarters, Kyoto, for their 2nd formal meeting since the committee was established. The day-long meeting took place in the conference room on the 4th floor of the Urasenke Center building, and Daisosho SEN Genshitsu, who has long led Urasenke's work to spread chado far and wide, was present to open the meeting with a greeting speech. In it, he said that there are, on the one hand, people who like to come and learn chanoyu because of the enjoyable time they can spend over a bowl of matcha, while on the other hand, there are people who desire to learn more deeply about chado, the Way of Tea. He said that after spending more than sixty years tackling his work to spread chado internationally, that work has at last begun to flower. He urged the advisory committee members to show leadership and do their utmost to develop Tea in their respective areas of North America.

After that, the members reported about the current conditions in and around their respective Tankokai association. They then received an explanation from NOGUCHI Koichi, who is both the Executive Managing Director of the Urasenke Tankokai Federation and Manager-in-Chief for the Urasenke Foundation Office of Management, about what Urasenke Headquarters expects of their committee. Next, there was an explanation from HASEGAWA Yoshitetsu, who is both the Standing Director and Office of Management Manager-in-Chief of the Urasenke Tankokai Federation, about the Tankokai organization in Japan.

Following a lunch break, the members reconvened and engaged in discussion about various issues which need to be addressed in order to ensure the future of Urasenke Chado in North America.