John V. Roos, U.S. Ambassador to Japan
John V. Roos is the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to Japan.
Ambassador Roos' tenure in Tokyo comes at an historic period in U.S.-Japan relations. Shortly after his arrival, power shifted from the Liberal Democratic Party for essentially the first time in 50 years to the Democratic Party of Japan, and Ambassador Roos played a key role in managing the relationship through the transition.
On Aug. 6, 2010 he became the first U.S. official ever to attend the commemoration ceremony of the atomic bombing in Hiroshima. Following the devastating 9.0 earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear crisis on March 11, 2011, Ambassador Roos helped lead the American mission to support Japan's response to the multi-dimensional and unprecedented disaster. During his two and a half years in Japan, Ambassador Roos has built relationships and established a rich and active dialogue with government leaders, businesspeople, media and students over the course of his travels across 44 of Japan's 47 prefectures.
In addition to addressing the security, economic, and global challenges that Japan and the United States face, Ambassador Roos has drawn a specific focus on areas of cooperation that include people to people connections, innovation and entrepreneurship, and trade issues, including Japan's desire to join the Trans-Pacific Partnership. He also works closely with Japan on issues related to the Hague Convention. In October 2011, citing his extraordinary leadership and innovative management as the U.S. Ambassador to Japan before and after March 11, the Department of State awarded Ambassador Roos the prestigious Sue E. Cobb 2011 Award for Exemplary Diplomatic Service.
In announcing Ambassador Roos' selection, President Obama said, "A partnership between the United States and Japan is one of tremendous interest. The person who I thought could best do this is somebody with superb judgment, somebody with an outstanding intellect, somebody who is a very close friend of mine and a close advisor, somebody who has worked both in the private sector with cutting-edge technologies, but also is somebody who has a deep interest in public service. He is somebody who I'm confident is going to be able to help to strengthen both the regional and the global relationship between the United States and Japan." Ambassador Roos was sworn into office on Aug. 16, 2009.
Prior to his appointment, Ambassador Roos served as Chief Executive Officer at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, the leading law firm in the U.S. in the representation of technology, life sciences, and emerging growth companies. There he helped lead his firm during the waves of innovation in Silicon Valley, from the growth of software and communications, to the Internet Age and the emergence of biotechnology, to today's focus on clean technology and renewable energy.
Ambassador Roos grew up in San Francisco and attended Stanford University, where he graduated Phi Beta Kappa with Honors and Distinction, and Stanford Law School, earning his Juris Doctor in 1980, achieving Order of the Coif. Throughout his career, Ambassador Roos has been active in public service, serving on a public school board in California from 1991 to 1999. Prior to becoming Ambassador to Japan, Ambassador Roos served on the Stanford School of Education Dean's Advisory Board and on the Law School Dean's Advisory Council. He was elected to membership in the Stanford Associates for his long-standing volunteer service to the University. He and his wife Susie have two children living in California, their daughter, Lauren, a nurse in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Children's Hospital of Los Angeles, and their son, David, a student at Stanford.