The founder Kunihiko Okura


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Biography of Kunihiko Okura (1882 to 1971)
Kunihiko Okura was born into a Samurai family as the son of Ebara in Kanzaki, Saga Prefecture. He graduated from Toa Dobun Shoin College in Shanghai in 1906 and started working at the Okura Paper Company the same year. He won the confidence of the then-president Bunji Okura and was adopted by the Okura family in 1912. Later on, it led him to the president of the company after the death of Bunji.
Kunihiko developed the business successfully but believed that the true economic activities are not only to seek for profits. His thought was that the personal growth is vital to develop a company and the bottom line for the prosperity of a nation. This is why he involved himself in educational activities and established the Fujimi Kindergarten in Meguro, Tokyo and the Nouson Kogei Gakuin in Saigomura (current Kanzaki), Saga Prefecture. To deepen and widen this thought, he established the Okura Institute for the Study of Spiritual Culture in 1932.
The institute faced fateful crisis during and after the confusing period of the World War for many times but Kunihiko gave all his personal fortune to maintain and develop this institute until his death in 1971.

 

 

 Main chronological list

1882

Born in Kanzaki, Saga Prefecture

1897

Entered the Saga junior high school

1903

Entered the Toa Dobun Shoin College in Shanghai, China

1906

Started working at Okura Paper Shoko Tianjin branch in China

1912

Was adopted by Bunji Okura, the second then-president of the Okura Paper Company

1918

Assumed the presidency of Okura Paper Company

1919

Additional post as president of the Odawara Paper Company

1924

Established the Fujimi Kindergarten in Meguro, Tokyo

1925

Additional post as president of the Aichi Paper Company

1928

Established the Nouson Kogei Gakuin in Saigomura (current Kanzaki), Saga Prefecture

1929

Let the great poet of India Sir Rabindranath Tagore stay at his home and deepened friendship

1930

Established the Joboku Jyoshi Kogei Gakuin in Kurume, Tokyo

1932

Established the Okura Institute for the Study of Spiritual Culture

Started running the Okura Factory

1934

Additional post as president of Tokushu Paper Mfg. Co., Ltd. 

1937

Assumed the presidency of Toyo University

1948

Began operation of selling Library supplies “Gorindo”

1959

Became the director of Tagores Memorial Association

1962

Assumed the office of adviser of Kogakkan University

1964

Started the Okurayama Zen Meditation Society

1971

Died at the age of 89