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Japan Society Honoree, Candice Kumai A Cultural Diplomat

Inspiration > Japanese and Kaizen

By: Candice Kumai

Congrats to our boss Candice Kumai! On her award with the Japan Society, Houston – this is her second award with Japan Societies in NYC and TX. It is her 14th award including a dozen plus for her documentarian work:



CANDICE KUMAI — the 2023 J. THOMAS SCHIEFFER LEADERSHIP AWARD recipient — is global leader in wellness and cultural diplomacy. 


Television personality, writer, business woman and Le Cordon Bleu- classically-trained chef and journalist. She has written seven bestselling books


With an ever-expanding brand that encompasses cooking, culinary books and wellness

publications, and film and tv shows both in the U.S. and Japan, she has earned the title of



What sets Candice apart from others in the wellness space is her keen understanding of how

heritage, tradition and culture are linked to being healthy in mind, in body and in spirit. For

Candice’s wellness is rooted in her Japanese heritage. Born in California to a Japanese mother

and a Polish-American father, Candice was raised to be mindful of Japanese practices and

values. Her countless trips to be with her family in Japan from a young age instilled in her a deep and devout love for Japan and its people that has grown into a profound respect and appreciation for sharing Japan’s culture and traditions with the world. 


Having inherited and nurtured a heart of Japanese harmony, Candice is the very personification

of “wa-gokoro” (和心)! She communicates Japan with a warmth and an authenticity that

provides a framework for greater understanding while paving the way for personal growth and

collective progress.


By carrying forward the legacy of her Japanese ancestors, Candice has become a global leader

not only in wellness but also in cultural diplomacy.


Read more about Candice own wellness journey in KINTSUGI WELLNESS-THE JAPANESE


ANCIENT SPIRITUAL WELLNESS AND WISDOM, SPIRITED, on Audible. – Patsy Brown, Executive Director, Japan Society of Houston 



Candice Kumai is a 14-time award winning writer, classically trained chef, and journalist.

Candice has written seven books, which reached bestseller lists and were translated across the world.

Candice is a regular contributor on the TODAY Show and is the former Editor-At-Large at Shape and Men’s Journal. Candice has written for Vogue, Cosmopolitan, Bon Appétit, Yoga Journal, Men’s Health, Women’s Health, Well + Good, and has contributed to Forbes, Chopra, Goop, WSJ, New York Times Travel, Conde Nast Traveler, Good Morning America, NHK World and more. A Top Chef & Selena + Chef alumna, Candice has appeared as a regular judge on Iron Chef America & Beat Bobby Flay.

She directs, writes, hosts and produces shows, content and award-winning documentaries with her production company, Kirei Media. Candice also hosts the weekly, top ranked Podcast Wabi Sabi. She works in wellness, beauty and cooking alongside celebrities like Anne Hathaway, Dan Levy and Selena Gomez. She is an ambassador for global brands like Shiseido & Ito En. 

Candice contributes a majority of her time to non-profit work in animal rescue and feeding the hungry.

Follow Candice @CandiceKumai on social media and on YouTube. Sign up for her newsletter for all current updates. Candice resides in Brooklyn, New York.



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