Princess Takamado (Norihito Shinnōhi Hisako) née Hisako Tottori (Tottori Hisako, born 10 July 1953) is a member of the Japanese Imperial Family as the widow of Prince Takamado.
She is the eldest daughter of Japanese industrialist Shigejiro Tottori. Hisako accompanied her father to England, where he was transferred for work, and while still a child became fluent in the English language. She subsequently graduated from Girton College, Cambridge University in the UK in 1975 with undergraduate degrees in anthropology and archaeology. On her return to Japan, she obtained a position working for a translation company, but soon returned to England to learn about legal terminology used in statutes. She returned to Japan again in 1982. After her return, she was hired to assist Prince Mikasa as an interpreter and assistant at the 31st International Asian-North African Cultural Symposium. Princess Takamado received a PhD in arts from the Osaka University of Arts in February 2012.
On 23 April 1984, she attended a reception hosted by the Embassy of Canada in Tokyo, where she first met Prince Takamado (Norihito). He proposed on 20 May and the Imperial Household Council announced the engagement on 1 August 1984. The formal engagement ceremony made on 17 September 1984, and the wedding held on 6 December 1984. The Prince and Princess had three daughters:
Princess Tsuguko (Tsuguko Joō, born 8 March 1986)
Princess Noriko (Noriko Joō, born 22 July 1988)
Princess Ayako (Ayako Joō, born 15 September 1990)
Prince and Princess Takamado were the most widely traveled couple in the Japanese Imperial Family, visiting 35 countries together in 15 years to represent Japan on various functions. The Prince’s last visits included Egypt and Morocco in May 2000, Hawaii in July 2001 (to promote the Japanese tea ceremony), and to the Republic of Korea from May to June 2002. The latter was in order to attend the Opening Ceremony of the 2002 FIFA World Cup Korea-Japan. The goodwill visit by the Prince and Princess to Korea was the first Japanese royal visit since World War II, and was an important step in the promotion of friendly bilateral relations between Japan and Korea. While in Korea, the couple toured the country extensively, met with President Kim Dae-jung and ordinary Koreans, And He visited the facilities for the physically disabled in South Korea that the Princess Nashimoto Masako had sponsored.
Prince Takamado died of ventricular fibrillation while playing squash with the Canadian ambassador, Robert G. Wright, at the Canadian Embassy, leaving a widow and three young daughters. Since the Prince’s death, Princess Takamado has been extremely active in a very large number of charitable organizations involving sports, cultural exchange and the environment, taking on all of the posts formerly held by her late husband, as well as numerous new posts.
June 2003, she visited Dublin, Ireland for the 2003 Special Olympics World Summer Games. In June 2004, she made an official visit to Canada, traveling extensively across the nation as part of the 75th Anniversary of the formal diplomatic relations between Canada and Japan. During this visit, she received two honorary doctorates in Law, one from the University of Alberta and the other from the University of Prince Edward Island. In November 2004, she visited Bangkok, Thailand, to attend the 3rd IUCN World Conference as Honorary President of BirdLife International.
In March 2004, Her Highness was elected to succeed Queen Noor of Jordan as Honorary President of BirdLife International. She visited Montevideo, Uruguay in 2008, and Buenos Aires, Argentina for the Birdlife World Conservation Conference. During this visit, she attended special high goal polo exhibition played by the Novillo Astrada brothers in her honor at the La Aguada Polo Club.
In June 2005, she visited Germany to attend the 2005 FIFA Confederations Cup, attending matches between Germany against Argentina, and Japan against Brazil. Afterwards, she visited Jordan to attend the royal wedding of Princess Badiya bint El Hassan. In November of the same year, returned to England for the Global Council Meeting of BirdLife International. In January 2006, she returned to Canada to attend the opening of the “Prince Takamado Gallery of Japan” at the Royal Ontario Museum. She also returned to Germany later that year in order to attend the 2006 FIFA World Cup.
The Princess is the author of a children's book titled Lulie the Iceberg (OUP, 1998); it is her second book.