Steve Sakanashi

Director of Sekai Creator

Fuchu, Tokyo, Japan

Class of 2008, History major


Sakanashi works in the intersection of entrepreneurship, education, and U.S.-Japan relations. In 2012, he started a nonprofit organization called the Megumi Initiative in order to share God’s love with Japanese people. Through that, he runs an English program for Japanese students in Seattle, supports church planting in Japan, and develops Japan’s next generation of leaders through the entrepreneurship program they offer called Sekai Creator. Sakanashi said all initiatives are rooted in a desire to share God’s love through tangible means. He is heavily involved in his local church where he is in the final stages of becoming a lay pastor.

How does your time at SPU connect to what you’re doing today?

My academic studies are directly related to my success today because history taught me how to think, write, and understand how the realities of today are tied to the beliefs, decisions, and outcomes of the past. My time at SPU helped me think more deeply about why things are the way that they are and why people do what they do. I think that all the focus on purpose and meaning at SPU have helped me lead others into creating things that provide a greater blessing to others.

Which SPU faculty or staff member made a difference in your education?

Dr. Bob Drovdahl played a special part in my time at SPU. I vividly recall his supportive and welcoming presence through my years at SPU. A few friends and I asked him to lead our small men’s group. His personal commitment to my growth as a man embodies the type of relationships I enjoyed with many professors during my time at SPU.

What advice would you give to current SPU students?

There are so many people in the world with both needs and contributions that relate to you. Be ambitious to positively impact the world and remain humble, understanding that you need many others to achieve your dreams.