The Richmond-Shimada Friendship Commission was created for the purpose of initiating and conducting approved exchange activities with appropriate organizations, groups and citizens of Shimada.
In 1961 during a conference in Washington, DC, Councilmember Bradley greeted Mayor Mori of Shimada, Japan with an invitation to begin a sister city relationship. At the October 16, 1961 City Council meeting, the Council voted in favor of the affiliation.
Article from IBM ET News, Vol. 4 No. 9 December 1, 1962
Friendship Writes Tale of 2 Cities
Richmond, CA - Promoting better understanding among nations is no mere cliche for citizens here. As part of the "People-to-People" program, Richmond residents put words into action by holding a week-long, city-wide festival in honor of Shimada, Japan, their sister city.
The Richmond-Shimada town affiliation grew out of the People-to-People program, instituted in 1956 by President Eisenhower and subsequently endorsed by President Kennedy. The program enables every citizen to play an important, tangible role in promoting international friendship and understanding.
A town affiliation links an American city with a community in a foreign land. Usually, both share common characteristics-size, industry, geographical or economic similarities.
The Richmond-Shimada friendship began when the mayors of both cities met in Washington, DC to discuss the idea. Actual affiliation was accomplished last year (1961). In March, a Richmond-Shimada friendship week commission was appointed.
The first annual observance of Friendship Week had its auspicious beginning at the Richmond Memorial Auditorium. speakers included mayor W.A. Cannon and Sumio Yoshii, chapter president of the local Japanese-American Citizens League. Local residents spoke of the hospitality they had received during their recent trip to Shimada.
Celebrating 50 Plus Years of Friendship:
2011 marked the 50th anniversary of the Richmond-Shimada friendship. In honor of this milestone, the Cities of Richmond and Shimada co-sponsored the Richmond-Shimada Golden Rose Festival on April 28, 2012 at the Richmond Memorial Convention Center. Community members came out and enjoyed performances from troupes that travelled from Shimada, Japan to participate in the festival. Performances included Taiko Drumming, Japanese Sword Exhibition, Tea Ceremony, Calligraphy and more.
Please email Trina_Jackson@ci.richmond.ca.us or phone 510-620-6581 to be added to an email distribution list for additional information. If you're interested in applying to become a commissioner, please download the Commission Application and contact Trina Jackson for instructions.