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Baker Donelson's Donna D. Fraiche Honored by Japanese Government

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The Government of Japan has officially conferred the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon, to the Honorable Donna D. Fraiche of Baker Donelson in recognition of her outstanding contributions to promoting exchanges and friendly relations between Japan and the United States in her role as Honorary Consul of Japan.

This prestigious decoration was presented to Ms. Fraiche by Consul-General Hiroyuki Kobayashi during an official conferment ceremony held at the Louisiana Governor's Mansion on August 19, 2019. The Order of the Rising Sun was established in 1875 to bestow upon individuals who have made extraordinary contributions to positive relations between Japan and her friends. The decoration is given by His Majesty the Emperor of Japan. Participating in the ceremony were Louisiana State Governor John Bel Edwards; the Baton Rouge Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome; Don Pierson, Secretary of Louisiana Economic Development; Dr. Rebekah Gee, Secretary of the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals; the Consul General of France in Louisiana, Dean of the Consular Corps, Vincent Sciama; and J. Edwin Webb, CEO of the World Trade Center New Orleans.

"I am deeply humbled by this honor and accept it with sincere gratitude to His Majesty, Emperor Naruhito, and the Government of Japan," said Ms. Fraiche. "It has been a tremendous privilege to promote friendly relations and mutual understanding between the United States and Japan and especially Louisiana. I look forward to the opportunity to continue to strengthen the bond between these two great countries."

Ms. Fraiche, who is senior counsel with Baker Donelson and was instrumental in the founding of the Firm's New Orleans and Baton Rouge offices, has been the Honorary Consul of Japan in New Orleans for Louisiana and a member of the Louisiana Consular Corps since 2008. Following Japan's Great East Earthquake in 2011, Ms. Fraiche devoted considerable effort to organizing symposia and exchanges for leaders of Japan and the Louisiana community to share best practices in light of shared disaster and recovery experiences, and to chairing events to raise funds for disaster effort. She has helped spearhead the revival and now institutionalized Sister City relationship between New Orleans and Matsue, Japan by hosting several delegations from New Orleans and Louisiana, and led an official delegation that traveled to Matsue in October 2013 to celebrate the 20-year anniversary of the relationship between the two cities. Ms. Fraiche has also participated and assisted in the Japan U.S. Military Program (JUMP) inaugural event hosted by the Japan Society of New Orleans, of which she is an active member. As a frequent guest speaker to the local Japan Society, she has given presentations emphasizing the importance of the friendship between Japan and the U.S. As a member of the Board of the Japanese Garden Society, she helped support the Japanese Garden, Yakumo Nihon Teien as part of the Botanical Garden at City Park. She has served as the emcee to open the Japan Fest at New Orleans Museum of Art every year and has watched it grow. But mostly, her greatest enthusiasm was in introducing Japanese dignitaries and business representatives to their counterparts and leaders of Louisiana where great cultures of cuisine, jazz music, history, commerce and the arts are shared.

Past Chair of the Louisiana Health Care Commission, Ms. Fraiche is a former member of the Louisiana Recovery Authority (LRA) after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. She served as chair of the Long Term Community Planning Task Force and the Health Care Committee and was the LRA delegate to the Louisiana Health Care Redesign Collaborative chartered to develop and oversee the blueprint for health care policy in Louisiana. She is the president of the Louisiana Chapter of the International Women's Forum and chair of the Board of Woman's Hospital. She is president of the Louisiana Supreme Court Historical Society, past president of the Louisiana Bar Foundation and a past chair of the Board of Loyola University, and she serves on a number of other community foundations, non-profit and public company boards. Ms. Fraiche was the first female president of the organization now known as the American Health Lawyers Association.

(Pictured left to right) Dr. Rebekah Gee, Secretary of the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals; Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome, Mayor-President of the City of Baton Rouge and East Baton Rouge Parish; Governor John Bel Edwards, Governor, State of Louisiana; Honorable Donna D. Fraiche, Honorary Consul Japan; Don Pierson, Secretary of Louisiana Department of Economic Development; Mrs. Hiroyuki Kobayashi; Honorable Hiroyuki Kobayashi, Consul General Japan, Nashville, TN; Honorable Vincent Sciama, Consul General of France, Dean of Louisiana Consular Corps; Mr. Edwin Webb, CEO, World Trade Center New Orleans

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