Rachael Ann Soloway, a staff assistant for U.S. Rep. Dennis Ross, will represent Florida as a first runner-up in the 2016 Cherry Blossom Princess Program.
Cherry Blossom Princesses are part of a cultural, educational and professional development program for women leaders ages 19 to 24 held each year at the National Cherry Blossom Festival in Washington, DC.
Sponsoring the event was the National Conference of State Societies (NCSS), a nonprofit association for State and Territorial Societies in the National Capital Area. Princesses take part in the weeklong program, with multiple events, meetings, volunteer opportunities and tours throughout the D.C. area, including meetings with White House Senior Director for Global Engagement and Special Assistant to the President, Courtney Beale, and Ambassador and Mrs. Kenichiro Sasae of Japan.
“I couldn’t be more thrilled to have our great State of Florida represented by Rachael Soloway, whose intelligence, charisma and passion for international relations has made her an excellent role model for young women everywhere, Ross, who serves as Senior Deputy Majority Whip, said in a statement Wednesday.
“We must continue supporting these types of civics and relationship-building programs so our next generations are equipped with the skills and educational tools to positively influence and support our communities, nation and world.”
For nearly 70 years, the Cherry Blossom program has enabled more than 3,000 young women leaders from across the country and globally, Ross added, to engage in professional and cultural development and celebrate the friendship between the United States and Japan.
Soloway, a University of South Florida alumna, was selected by the Florida State Society. She was accompanied and supported by her parents, Daniel and Natalie Soloway, throughout the program’s activities. Rachael Soloway plans to stay involved with the Cherry Blossom Princess Program, as well as help further strengthen the U.S.-Japan relationship throughout her career.
Laura Winthrop Abbot, Senior vice president of the U.S.-Japan Council and founding Executive Director of the TOMODACHI Generation Initiative joint cultural exchange program, was the guest speaker at the luncheon, which was supported by more than 20 donors, including the Florida State Society, the Florida House on Capitol Hill, Mike Papantonio and Kemal Deger, the chef-owner of Bistro Cacao.