Salt Lake City, Utah – Dr. Jeanette M. Misaka received the prestigious “Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Rays”  award at a special September ceremony hosted by the Consul-General of Japan.

"She has contributed greatly as an educator and leader especially in human rights issues, with outstanding lifetime achievement toward greater understanding and cooperation between the people of the United States and Japan.” officials stated in their commendation remarks about Misaka.

Misaka was honored along with Dr. Van C. Gessel of Brigham Young University. Gessel was given the Commendation of the Foreign Minister of Japan award for 35 years of Japanese language and literature efforts.

Both recipients received their distinguished Japanese government decorations during an event at the Grand America Hotel hosted by the Denver, Colorado Consul General of Japan, Makoto Ito.

Misaka has been an active member of the Japanese American Civic League (JACL) since the 1950’s serving in several capacities. She has worked tirelessly promoting rights for the disabled, women, minorities and others. As a child Misaka lived in the Japanese Heart Mountain Internment Camp in Wyoming with her parents. She currently serves as the Salt Lake City Sister Cities Representative for Matsumoto, Japan. 

"This honor is much deserved and show cases the depth of talent and experience we are fortunate to have on our Sister City Board. Jeanette is a real treasure for all of us,” said Jinger LaGuardia, Chair, Salt Lake City Sister Cities Board.

Salt Lake City’s Sister City Board serves an advisory role to the Mayor and is designed to promote cultural understanding and economic development worldwide.