Nationality

Japan

Education

Master’s Degree in Law and Diplomacy from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, Medford, Massachusetts, United States,

Bachelor’s Degree in Laws from Jochi Daigaku/ Sophia University, Tokyo, Japan

Languages

English, Finnish, French, German, Japanese

I have chosen a career that allows me to feel directly connected to United Nations work on peace and security issues around the globe.

Today, I work as a Senior Political Affairs Officer and Team Leader for Southeast Asia and the Pacific. My team covers 23 countries.

I have been posted in over 30 countries across the globe. My 20-year journey with the United Nations has been diverse and fulfilling. I began in the Office for Research and the Collection of Information (ORCI), which was at the time part of the Secretary-General’s Office. I then had the opportunity to join the Electoral Assistance Division in the Department of Political Affairs. I worked with this team for eight years and wore many hats as the United Nations Coordinator for the Joint Office of Security and Cooperation in Europe-United Nations Operation in Armenia in 1994, and Deputy Chief Electoral Officer in the United Nations Transitional Administration in Eastern Slavonia, Baranja and Western Sirmium. It was an extremely gratifying job. I saw multiple election processes start and succeed: in Cambodia, Nepal, Eritrea, Armenia, Mozambique, South Africa, El Salvador and many more. With each election I worked on I felt I helped cast a ballot for change, peace and security.

I have always known I wanted to join the United Nations. I come from a bi-cultural Japanese and Finnish family. I spent my childhood in different countries: Japan, Germany and India, so I knew by the time I went to university that I wanted to have a career at the United Nations. I took the National Competitive Exam in Political Affairs in early 1990, joined the United Nations the same year in December. I never looked back!

My work is intense, inspiring and fulfilling. My immediate work environment is diverse and stimulating and I have always felt right at home as part of the highly international and diverse United Nations family.

I am fortunate to be part of the United Nations team for many professional as well as personal reasons. As a working mother, I telecommuted for a year and a half at one stage of my career, which helped me tremendously as I raised a very young child. Balancing professional needs and family is essential for any happy and healthy career. At the United Nations I have been able to do just that, and now I am actually planning on going on mission to Nepal with my 8 year old son in tow!

My advice to potential applicants to the United Nations is to be clear about why you want to join the United Nations and what exactly you want to achieve. Then join our team and maintain your passion and patience.

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