Our Team

Our Team

The ISAKx team is composed of entrepreneurs and educators with decades of experience across fields as diverse as finance, e-commerce, and aerospace. Our instructors are young (at-heart), yet experienced educators who have been deeply involved in UWC ISAK Japan’s high school and summer school programs.

lin-kobayashi-isakx
UWC ISAK Japan Co-Founder and Chair of Board

Lin Kobayashi

Ms. Kobayashi’s passion for education began during her studies at a residential high school in Canada, and continued to develop over the years. Before returning to Tokyo in 2008 to launch the ISAK project, she spent two years working for the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in the Philippines, where she worked to program non-formal education projects for street children. Prior to UNICEF, Ms. Kobayashi worked at the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC). Ms. Kobayashi began her career at Morgan Stanley and holds an MA in International Education Policy Analysis from Stanford University and a BA in Development Economics from the University of Tokyo.

rod-jemison-isakx
Founding Head of UWC ISAK Japan

Rod Jemison

Rod Jemison was appointed founding Head of School from his position as Director of the Upper School at La Jolla Country Day School, a private school north of San Diego, California. During his eight-year tenure, he successfully led in all areas of the high school’s operations including educational program reform, fundraising, finance, preparing for college and marketing. A native of Nashville, TN (USA), Mr. Jemison first came to Japan in 1992 as a member of the Japanese Exchange Teaching Program where he served as an assistant language teacher at Kurikoma Junior High School in Miyagi-ken.

cary-reid-isakx
UWC ISAK Japan Faculty Emeritus Global Politics and Theory of Knowledge

Cary Reid

Cary believes in student-directed learning in and out of the classroom. He thinks we can learn more if we understand how we learn. He spent three years helping to develop the Project Based Diploma (PBD), an alternative high school leaving certificate for independent learners, at UWC Mahindra College in India. He also helped to design a similar program at The Harbour School in Hong Kong. Mr. Ried studied peace and conflict at graduate school and worked in diplomacy and public health before returning to teaching. He believes in the UWC ideal of bringing passionate young people together to learn from each other.

jesse-palmer-isakx
UWC ISAK Japan Summer School Director Emeritus

Jesse Palmer

Jesse is an educator and advisor focused on leadership, organization building, and growth experiences. He served three years as Director of Summer School here at UWC ISAK Japan, after volunteering for the program since its beginning in 2010. He was also a Teaching Fellow with our founding faculty in 2014. Jesse brings experience from a startup leadership team, management consulting, and biology research at NASA. He received his bachelor’s degree in Human Biology from Stanford University. Jesse also teaches mindfulness and meditation, designs interactive art and games, and writes poetry.

kanatsu-sasaki-isakx
ISAKx Admissions Consultant

Kanatsu Sasaki

The ISAK philosophy personally resonated with Kanatsu before the ISAK high school opened and she decided to join ISAK as a volunteer in 2011. She served as a project manager of ISAK Summer School 2012 and 2013. After living in Singapore for four years, she returned to ISAK again in 2018 as summer school staff. She has studied public administration at graduate school in the US after receiving her bachelor's degree in International Relations in Japan. She is very excited at the new program, ISAKx, and looks forward to interacting with students all over the world!

hiromi-sakae
ISAKx Marketing Consultant

Hiromi Sakae

Believing that education is the most essential element in shaping a better, peaceful, and sustainable future, Hiromi joined the ISAKx team as a pro bono member. She resonates with ISAKs mission to prepare young leaders from diverse backgrounds to take action in building a better future, and she hopes to spread this mission beyond campus. Hiromi works for an investment & business development firm (Sogo-Shosha) in Tokyo and has managerial experience in the Healthcare, Education, and Aerospace industries.

lin-kobayashi-isakx

Lin Kobayashi

UWC ISAK Japan
Co-Founder and Chair of Board
Ms. Kobayashi’s passion for education began during her studies at a residential high school in Canada, and continued to develop over the years. Before returning to Tokyo in 2008 to launch the ISAK project, she spent two years working for the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in the Philippines, where she worked to program non-formal education projects for street children. Prior to UNICEF, Ms. Kobayashi worked at the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC). Ms. Kobayashi began her career at Morgan Stanley and holds an MA in International Education Policy Analysis from Stanford University and a BA in Development Economics from the University of Tokyo.
rod-jemison-isakx

Rod Jemison

UWC ISAK Japan
Founding Head of School
Rod Jemison was appointed founding Head of School from his position as Director of the Upper School at La Jolla Country Day School, a private school north of San Diego, California. During his eight-year tenure, he successfully led in all areas of the high school’s operations including educational program reform, fundraising, finance, preparing for college and marketing. A native of Nashville, TN (USA), Mr. Jemison first came to Japan in 1992 as a member of the Japanese Exchange Teaching Program where he served as an assistant language teacher at Kurikoma Junior High School in Miyagi-ken.
jesse-palmer-isakx

Jesse Palmer

UWC ISAK Japan
Summer School Director Emeritus
Jesse is an educator and advisor focused on leadership, organization building, and growth experiences. He served three years as Director of Summer School here at UWC ISAK Japan, after volunteering for the program since its beginning in 2010. He was also a Teaching Fellow with our founding faculty in 2014. Jesse brings experience from a startup leadership team, management consulting, and biology research at NASA. He received his bachelor’s degree in Human Biology from Stanford University. Jesse also teaches mindfulness and meditation, designs interactive art and games, and writes poetry.
cary-reid-isakx

Cary Reid

UWC ISAK Japan Faculty Emeritus
Global Politics and Theory of Knowledge
Cary believes in student-directed learning in and out of the classroom. He thinks we can learn more if we understand how we learn. He spent three years helping to develop the Project Based Diploma (PBD), an alternative high school leaving certificate for independent learners, at UWC Mahindra College in India. He also helped to design a similar program at The Harbour School in Hong Kong. Mr. Ried studied peace and conflict at graduate school and worked in diplomacy and public health before returning to teaching. He believes in the UWC ideal of bringing passionate young people together to learn from each other.
kanatsu-sasaki-isakx

Kanatsu Sasaki

ISAKx Admissions Consultant
The ISAK philosophy personally resonated with Kanatsu before the ISAK high school opened and she decided to join ISAK as a volunteer in 2011. She served as a project manager of ISAK Summer School 2012 and 2013. After living in Singapore for four years, she returned to ISAK again in 2018 as summer school staff. She has studied public administration at graduate school in the US after receiving her bachelor's degree in International Relations in Japan. She is very excited at the new program, ISAKx, and looks forward to interacting with students all over the world!
hiromi-sakae

Hiromi Sakae

ISAKx Marketing Consultant
Believing that education is the most essential element in shaping a better, peaceful, and sustainable future, Hiromi joined the ISAKx team as a pro bono member. She resonates with ISAK’s mission to prepare young leaders from diverse backgrounds to take action in building a better future, and she hopes to spread this mission beyond campus. Hiromi works for an investment & business development firm (Sogo-Shosha) in Tokyo and has managerial experience in the Healthcare, Education, and Aerospace industries.
isakx-logo-white
John Dewey

“ Education is not preparation for life; education is life itself. ”

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