Governor Mieko Yoshimura is the leader of Yamagata Prefecture, Japan. Initially elected as governor on 25 January 2009, Governor Mieko is currently on her third term as Yamagata governor. She made history as Yamagata’s first female governor and the sixth in Japan history. In her 10 years of leadership in Yamagata, Governor Mieko recorded achievements from various fields.
Enhancing Child-Rearing Support and Human Resource Development
Governor Mieko shows great concern on human resource welfare and development. This is evidenced by the success of programmes implemented. The opening of ‘Yamagata Single Parent Family Support Centre’ is one of the evidence. It aims at ensuring the welfare of single parent family. The support provided includes financial support, livelihood support, employment support, and consultation support.
Governor Mieko also responded to the projection saying that Yamagata’s population would decrease by about 30% in 30 years. To stop the declining population and declining birth rate in Yamagata Prefecture, she established ‘Yamagata Encounter Support Centre’ to expand the opportunities for people who want to get married.
In the field of education, Governor Mieko opened five schools in Murayama and Tateoka to reduce the burden of long-distance commuting. In addition, during her leadership, she gradually made childcare costs free, such as childbirth costs, childcare fees, and high school tuition fees.
Industrial promotion and job creation
In order to solidifying the Organic Light-Emitting Diode (OLED) industry in Yamagata, her administration collaborates with more than 50 companies in the prefecture for the sales and manufacture of organic electroluminescent (EL) lighting equipment (OLED basic materials). She also established ‘Total Job Support’ a one-stop consultation service that adds Hello Work an employment placement and vocational counselling functions to the Yamagata Prefecture Youth Employment Support Centre and Yamagata Prefecture Job Seekers Comprehensive Support Centre, which provide employment support.
Development of Agriculture and Forestry
When she took office as Yamagata governor, the income of agricultural sector was 60.4 billion Yen (5th place in Tohoku). In just 4 years, her administration can reach the 1st place in Tohoku with income of 98.2 billion Yen. She also promoted ‘Yamagata Forest (Mori) Nomics’ that utilises the energy and the blessings of forest, and disseminated it nationwide through policy proposals. As form of concern for research in agriculture and forestry, she opened the first Department of Forestry and Agriculture Management in Tohoku University.
Pixabay Eiji Kikuta