Growing up in late 1960s Japan, Mieko Nakabayashi had an unlikely goal. The eldest daughter of a farmer-turned-land-developer, she dreamed of living overseas.
“I was so curious about the world,” she recalls.
Four decades later, that Saitama Prefecture schoolgirl has grown into a power player with a résumé spanning the Pacific Rim and two nation’s capitals. Nakabayashi, 50, has worked as a television reporter, think tank researcher, and professor. For a decade, she worked as a U.S. Senate budget staffer.