Sarah Fremerman Aptilon
Senior Consultant - Kansas, USA
A native of Prairie Village, Kansas, Sarah moved back to the Kansas City area in 2012 from Mexico City, where she directed JIC's Mexico branch for five years. For the past eleven years she has conducted training and teambuilding sessions for Japan Intercultural Consulting throughout the U.S. and Mexico. She earned a B.A. in East Asian Studies from Yale University and a Ph.D. in Japanese religion from Stanford University, and is fluent in both Japanese and Spanish.
Sarah now continues to oversee the firm's Latin America operations. Working in Latin American cultures present unique challenges for Japanese multinational companies, and Sarah frequently offers cross-cultural training sessions that focus on Japanese culture as well as specifically Mexican or other Latin American cultures. She also specializes in leading teambuilding sessions for many types of multicultural teams.
Sarah is highly experienced in working with the U.S. and Mexican operations of Japanese firms, particularly in the automotive, auto parts, and electronics industries. She has also worked extensively with companies involved in mergers and acquisitions, and possesses a unique understanding of the challenges and opportunities that arise in these new partnerships. Recent clients in this area include Sprint (SoftBank), Mizuho Financial Group (Royal Bank of Scotland), MGK (Sumitomo Chemical Group), and EF Johnson (JVC KENWOOD), among others.
Sarah lived and worked as a translator and interpreter at a Buddhist monastery in Kyoto for seven years, where she also presented regular lectures and workshops, and led week-long meditation retreats. Her participation in both the rituals and business operations of that institution has given her a unique perspective on Japanese organizational behavior, and a deep awareness of the traditional cultural factors that influence Japanese communication in the workplace.
She has also taught courses on Japanese religion at Stanford University and Santa Clara University, and has been a visiting scholar at the Centro de Estudios de Asia y África at El Colegio de México in Mexico City and at the Historiographical Institute at the University of Tokyo.