The Rt Hon. Lord Howard of Lympne CH QC
The Government of Japan bestowed the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star, upon the Rt Hon. Lord Howard of Lympne, former UK co-Chair of the UK-Japan 21st Century Group and member of the House of Lords, in recognition of his significant contribution to strengthening and developing relations between Japan and the United Kingdom.
Lord Howard’s achievements, in addition to his outstanding work as a member of the United Kingdom Parliament and now the House of Lords, including his work as the UK co-Chair of the UK-Japan 21st Century Group has promoted intellectual dialogue between the British and Japanese governments and the two countries’ business leaders.
First and foremost, Lord Howard, as co-chair of the UK-Japan 21st Century Group, played an essential role in promoting intellectual dialogue between the UK and Japan, where alongside Japan’s co-chair, he helped various collaborative efforts between the two countries. He acted as the lead speaker and facilitator in each of the annual meetings of the Group between 2011 and 2015. His work during his co-chairmanship contributed greatly to mutual understanding and interactive dialogue between our two countries.
During his many years of service, Lord Howard was instrumental in connecting the outcome of the Group’s annual meetings with efforts of the two governments to promote bilateral cooperation. Firstly, he presented the importance of the Group for promoting the bilateral cooperation in the field of security and defence, and as co-Chair regularly followed up cooperation in this area. This resulted in the introduction of the Japan-UK Foreign and Defence Ministers’ Meeting (“2+2”) in 2015. Secondly, Lord Howard initiated a series of breakfast meetings in the UK with prominent speakers from our two countries to share the latest political and economic situations in Japan.
The Government of Japan recognises the numerous achievements described above, and he therefore greatly deserves to be honoured with this decoration.
Mr Stephen McEnally
The Government of Japan bestowed the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Rosette on Mr Stephen McEnally, former Chief Executive of the Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation in recognition of his distinguished contribution to promoting friendly relations and mutual understanding between Japan and the United Kingdom.
After graduating from Grey College, University of Durham in 1972, Mr McEnally joined the British Council in 1975, holding a variety of posts both at home and overseas. From 1979 to 1983 he was the Council’s Assistant Representative in Tokyo and then Director of its Kyoto Office, where he oversaw its work in western Japan. He also managed the first cohort of British graduates to teach in Japan (now the JET Programme), an initiative he helped to set up in 1978. He was the Council’s Regional Officer for Japan and East Asia in the 1980s.
In 1994 he was appointed Director of Programmes at the Japan Foundation in London. In this role he contributed to the development of programmes in Japanese language education, Japanese Studies and cultural projects that laid the foundations for people-to-people exchange between the UK and Japan for more than ten years.
After becoming Chief Executive of the Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation in 2006, he worked, most notably, to set up two major funding programmes to promote Japanese Studies in British universities with a grant from The Nippon Foundation. The Sasakawa Lectureship Programme, a ￡2.5 million project, funded 13 new lectureship posts in Japanese Studies at 12 British universities. A ￡1.5 million studentship programme was also introduced for up to 30 Japanese Studies postgraduates per year that will continue until 2019. Furthermore, he initiated a joint project with Chatham House in order for representatives of the two countries to discuss issues of common concern and to examine potential areas of collaboration.
In 2011, as a board member of the Japan Society, he was instrumental in the decision to allow researchers and students affiliated with the Sasakawa Foundation to participate in the Society’s activities.
The Government of Japan recognises the significant contribution that Mr McEnally has made throughout his career to Japan-UK relations, and he therefore greatly deserves to be honoured with this decoration.
Ms Paula Ann Diamanti
The Government of Japan bestowed the Order of the Sacred Treasure, Gold and Silver Rays, upon Ms Paula Ann Diamanti, former staff of the Embassy of Japan in the UK, in recognition of her significant contribution to the activities of the Japanese overseas establishment.
Ms Diamanti started working at the Embassy of Japan in the UK from 1974 and supported the Embassy as a member of staff for more than 36 years. She started her career as personal assistant to the Finance Minister, but her excellent skills and capability as a secretary resulted in her promotion to the role of PA to Ambassador. She has served as PA to six ambassadors over 22 years until she ended her career in April 2016.
On top of managing the very tight daily schedules of the Ambassador, dealing with the letters and invitations as well as drafting official letters and note verbales, she enthusiastically learned and accumulated significant knowledge of the British protocol and etiquette. Her deep knowledge and experience on protocol issues made her an indispensable member of staff for the Embassy.
The Government of Japan recognises Ms Diamanti’s sterling work in enhancing the diplomatic relations between Japan and the UK through her dedication to the Embassy, and therefore she well deserves to be honoured with this decoration.
The Embassy of Japan