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David Russell

Director of Communications & Public Relations

International Security Industry Council of Japan

David is CEO of Russell Communications, Inc., a bilingual specialist in global strategic communications who has lived in Japan for over 30 years. During that time, he has done communications work for the Japanese Government, the Bank of Japan, the Japan Olympics Committee, and many major corporations. He is a well-known author, with over a dozen published books to date, including KEIRETSU: Inside the Hidden Japanese Conglomerates (McGraw-Hill), voted “Best Business and Management Book of the Year” in the US, an award never given before to a book about Japan.


He also penned scores of magazine articles, including a landmark piece for the Harvard Business Review about Japanese manufacturing. In addition to book-writing, Mr. Russell helped to write speeches for both the Prime Minister and leading corporate CEOs, created advertising and marketing materials for commercial companies, and authored reams of PR and IR text for issues and circumstances.


David started his career at a major Japanese securities company, where he worked and studied for five years before moving on to the Nihon Keizai (Nikkei) business news group and later the Toyo Keizai group. While at the latter, he served as Editor of the Sumitomo Group’s global PR magazine. In 2000 he started his own firm, with a mission to help Japanese companies improve the quality and scope of their global communications.


Over the next two decades he helped develop communications strategies and materials for companies as diverse as Toyota, Sony, NTT, DoCoMo, Fast Retailing, Mitsubishi UFJ Bank, Dentsu, Canon, Nomura Holdings, Tokyo Gas, ORIX, Tokyo Electric Power, and others. He provided strategic communications services to the Cabinet Office, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, METI, Ministry of the Environment, and other organizations. In 2015 he was asked to serve as Director of Communications for Japan’s first global Cybersecurity Summit. A few years later he was sent to NY to host a government-sponsored event featuring then-prime minister Abe.


Much of the early corporate demand for his skills focused on Investor Relations, which he showed clients should be an integral part of a comprehensive global communications strategy. Long before Japanese companies were paying serious attention to social media, he gave an SRO presentation (in Japanese) to members of the Japan IR Association about the role of social media and proactive corporate messaging. Thereafter he addressed 130 members of the Osaka Stock Exchange about how to improve stakeholder engagement. He has taught hundreds of Japanese executives how to re-think, re-energize, and turbo-charge their global communications.


Award-winning author, editor, teacher, lecturer, executive consultant, media trainer, and much more — Russell is one of Tokyo’s leading exponents of integrated, high-impact strategic communications for both public and private organizations.

David Russell
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