Aiko Shimajiri new Minister of Okinawa and Northern Territories
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced Oct. 6th the nomination of Aiko Shimajiri, a 50-year-old Liberal Democratic Party Upper House representative from Okinawa to the post of the Minister of State for Okinawa and Northern Territories Affairs in his reshuffle of his cabinet. Shimajiri is also the current Chairperson of the LDP Okinawa Chapter.
Shimajiri is the fourth person selected for a minister of state from Okinawa, and the first female minister from the prefecture. She was born Mar. 4th, 1965 in Sendai City, Miyagi Prefecture. She graduated from Sophia University in Tokyo, and worked for Shearson Lehman Brothers, as a teacher at the Okinawa School of Foreign Languages, and served as a vice president of JSL Nippon Academy.
In 2004, Shimajiri was first elected as a member of Naha City Assembly in a by-election, and in April 2007, she was elected as a member of the House of Councilors for the first time. She is currently on her second term.
Shimajiri served previously as the Cabinet Office Parliamentary Secretary and the Reconstruction Agency Parliamentary Secretary, and is currently the Chairperson of the Environment Committee of the House of Councilors, the post she has held since September 2014.