Dr. Jerome Friedman, professor Emeritus at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the 1990 Nobel Laureate in Physics, and member of the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University (OIST) Board of Governors, was awarded the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Rising Sun award by the Government of Japan at a Spring Decoration ceremony on May 10, 2016 in the State Room Matsu-no-Ma of the Imperial Palace in Tokyo.
Citing Dr. Friedman’s contribution to strengthening the relationship between Japan and the United States in the science and technology fields, focusing on the establishment and promotion of OIST as the reason for his award, the Government of Japan expressed its appreciation for Dr. Friedman’s role in creating a university that conducts a high level of education and research in science and technology, and thus contributes to the sustainable development of Okinawa.
“I am deeply honoured and extremely surprised to have received this award,” Friedman said. “To me, this award means that I have been able to do something positive between Japan and the U.S. and whenever you can bring countries together it is a wonderful thing.”
Dr. Friedman was presented his award by Emperor Akihito and received the award certificate from Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at the ceremony for the First Order of Merit and higher awards.
Friedman thanked the Japanese Government for their long and generous assistance and support.
“OIST could not be done without the generous support of the Japanese government and we are very grateful to them,” Friedman said. “We want the support to be looked at as an investment because investing in science and technology establishes the capability to improve society.”
Friedman also cited how he believed OIST provided a platform to strengthen the relationship between Japan and the rest of the world.
“I feel very privileged to be able to work on OIST,” Friedman said. “It has attracted very fine faculty and outstanding students from around the world and it is a way of establishing excellent long-term collaborations between Japanese researchers and researchers around the world.
Back Row (left to right): Ms. Asako Omi, Mrs. Yoshikawa, Former Director General, Japan Science and Technology Agency Dr. Hiroyuki Yoshikawa, OIST Board member Mr. Koji Omi, OIST Board member Dr. Akito Arima, Mrs. Baughman
Dr. Jerome Friedman Bio
Born in Chicago, Illinois in 1930. Dr. Friedman turned down a scholarship to the School of the Art Institute of Chicago to study physics at the University of Chicago where he received his Bachelor’s degree and Ph.D. He took a faculty position at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1967 where he remains as Institute Professor, Professor of Physics, Emeritus. He received the 1990 Nobel Prize in Physics with Henry Kendall and Richard Taylor for their work presenting the internal structure for protons, now known as quarks. Dr. Friedman has served on the OIST Board of Governors since 2011.