Sister City Commission


Sister City Commission

It is the mission of the Edmonds Sister City Commission to promote international communication and understanding through exchanges of people, ideas, and culture.

Edmonds and the city of Hekinan, Japan established a relationship on April 5, 1988. The two cities celebrate their 35th anniversary in 2023.

Hekinan is located in Aichi Prefecture about 40 kilometers from Nagoya. It was incorporated in 1948 from four villages. There are about 80,000 residents, and it hosts an active harbor and several substantial Tsurumai Park manufacturing plants. Toyota is the largest employer in the region and maintains a transmission assembly plant. Hekinan has stressed the importance of its civic and cultural assets, which include a cultural hall, a large regional hospital, botanical gardens, performance hall, and parks. Chubu Centrair International Airport opened in 2005 and is 50 minutes away from Hekinan, making the city more accessible to visitors.

The Edmonds Sister City Commission was created by City ordinance in 1988 and reports to the Mayor of Edmonds. The Mayor appoints members to the Commission, subject to City Council confirmation. The 12 non-paid Commissioners serve three-year terms with no term limits. Commissioners need not be residents of Edmonds.


Foster exchanges that reflect our intercultural focus between business, education and nonprofit organizations in the local area.

  • Participate in local events in the community
  • Provide the citizens of Edmonds with opportunities to learn about our experiences with our sister city
  • Provide the citizens of Edmonds education and awareness on the culture of
    our sister city

Foster a relationship between officials and staff of the sister cities. This includes but is not limited to: Mayor, Parks, Public Works, Community Development, Fire, and Police.

Foster relationships with other local cities that have sister city programs to exchange ideas and expand communications with other sister cities.



The Commission meets on the fourth Monday of every month (no meeting in December) at 6 pm in the Brackett Room at Edmonds City Hall, 121 5th Ave N., via Hybrid format. (Meetings are subject to change - please check the meeting calendar.) Agenda and zoom information can be found here.


  • Karen Reid
  • Katy Renz (Chair)
  • Kiwa Tashiro
  • Anne Nadreau
  • OPEN
  • Samantha Hopper
  • Iyoko Okano
  • Michele Fellows
  • Yuri Nishiyama
  • Karyn Heinekin (Secretary)
  • Colin Torretta
  • OPEN

City Staff
Carolyn LaFave, Exec. Asst. to the Mayor

Sister City Commission

Current Openings

Office of the Mayor
425.771.0247 (phone)
425.771.0252 (fax)