Executive Team
Tetsuya Yamanaka, President and CEO
Tetsuya “Tim” Yamanaka is the newly appointed President and CEO of Kintetsu World Express (U.S.A.) Inc., and General Manager of the Americas region. Following Nobutoshi “JT” Torii’s term, Tetsuya Yamanaka is tasked to pursue healthy and continuous growth for KWE across the Americas region in order to achieve the goals laid out in the Corporate Mid-term Management Plan.

Additionally, Mr. Yamanaka will help to foster KWE’s relationship with the newly acquired APL Logistics, in order to achieve a unified vision which he has dubbed “One U.S.A.”.

Tim was born in Tokyo, Japan and received his Bachelors of Commerce at Waseda University. He was fairly active in sports, having played soccer in high school and tennis in college. His KWE career began in April 1984, when he was assigned to the Tokyo Export Sales Office as a Sales Executive. After one decade, Tim was promoted to Sales Manager and transferred overseas to KWE U.S.A.’s Los Angeles Export Terminal to apply his sales knowledge and gain firsthand experience on the Americas market. In July 1996, Tim’s leadership and management skills were put to use at KWE’s San Francisco Export Terminal as Assistant Terminal Manager—by July 1997, Tim was promoted to Terminal Manager.

After seven more years of outstanding performance, he returned to Japan Headquarters in September 2004, this time as the appointed Chief Staff Manager of the Import Sales Department. In 2008, Yamanaka was assigned to the position of Deputy General Manager of Import Sales. The following year, he transferred to KWE’s busiest Southeast Asian sector, Singapore, to head as Managing Director for one year before returning back to Japan Headquarters to resume his duties as General Manager of Import Sales. After half a decade, Tim was inducted into KWE Japan’s Board of Directors in 2015, charged with oversight of Imports.

Since his appointment as President of KWE U.S.A. in 2016, Tim has relocated to KWE’s New York headquarters. He has fathered two sons, 24 and 20, who currently reside in Tokyo with his wife. On weekends—when time permits—Tim relaxes by studying the craft of cooking.
Luke Nakano, Senior Executive Officer, VP, Latin-American Region
Keisuke "Luke" Nakano, President of KWE Brazil, currently holds a position at KWE USA as Senior Executive Officer of the Executive Committee. Getting his start at KWE Japan in 1983, Mr. Nakano has since accumulated a vast amount of experience in a multitude of positions. He joined KWE USA when he took on the role of Sales Manager at KWE Toronto in 1988. Since then, Mr. Nakano's experience includes Staff Manager of the Perishable Department in West Region, Branch Manager of KWE Dallas, Assistant VP of South Region, and the President of KWE Latin America.

In his role as the President of KWE Brazil, Mr. Nakano led a campaign that resulted in the commencement of a subsidiary company in Brazil which began business activities on April 1, 2013. The goals and focuses of KWE Brazil are to (1) Create "synergy" among the KWE Group by leveraging Brazil businesses, (2) Further expanding business in Brazil, (3) Continue to promote the Brazilian market and educate all KWE Group members about new Sales opportunities in this market and (4) Make the best utilization of our resources in the Latin America Region to promote U.S. Brazil business.

Currently residing in Miami, Mr. Nakano’s primary role as Senior Executive Officer Latin America is to enhance KWE’s standing in South America.
Kat Nanto, Senior Executive Officer, VP, Perishables & Food
Katsuyuki “Kat” Nanto, Senior Vice President of the Central Region, is on the Executive Officers Committee as Senior Executive Officer. Mr. Nanto earned a MBA (Master of Business Administration) from Minnesota State University with some brief internship work at KWE in 1981 and 1982. Having been with KWE since 1983, Mr. Nanto has accrued more than thirty years of experience and is an expert in airfreight sales and profit maximization. His career at KWE began in the Sales Department of the Cleveland and Chicago branches. In the 90s, Mr. Nanto was promoted to Terminal Manager of Detroit branch and Senior Director and Terminal Manager of Chicago Export branch. Additionally, he served as the management representative for the acquisition of the ISO 9002 Certification for the Chicago Terminal.

As the Senior Vice President of the Central Region, Mr. Nanto oversees twelve branches in the Central Region and is assigned to development of perishable products nationwide. He is committed to enhancing KWE’s position through continuous improvements. Aligned with this commitment, he is leading a campaign that includes continuing the consistent improvement of service quality which is based on training and QMS (Quality Management Systems) efforts.
Thomas B. Smith, Senior Executive Officer, Senior VP of Administration & Procurement, and Corporate Secretary
Thomas "Tom" Smith has extensive experience in International Forwarding and Logistics business, having joined KWE in 1983. Smith also worked as a District Manager for Pandair, a major European based forwarder, and District Sales Manager for Air Express International in San Diego before rejoining KWE in January, 1987. He holds an Associate Degree in Flight Operations from Grossmont College and a Bachelor's Degree in Political Science and Economics from San Diego State University.

Mr. Smith has held numerous positions at KWE over the last 30 years, including Branch Manager in San Diego, National Account Branch Manager in San Francisco, Vice President of Corporate Sales and Marketing, Regional Vice President of the West Region and Senior Vice President of the Business Development Department based in Los Angeles. He served as a member of KWE U.S.A.'s Board of Directors from March, 2002 until March of 2014.

In March of 2014, Tom was elected on the Executive Officer Committee as Senior Executive Officer and the following month was transferred to the KWE USA Corporate Head Office in Jericho, New York to begin a new assignment as the Senior Vice President of Administration & Procurement and Corporate Secretary.

His daughter, Kari Demuede, is a Registered Nurse at Scripps Clinic in San Diego and his son Kyle is a Home Depot Manager in Santee, California.
Gerard Berger, Executive Officer, Senior VP, Operations
Gerard “Gerry” Berger, KWE USA’s Senior Vice President of Operations, is on the Executive Committee as an Executive Officer. Mr. Berger joined KWE Cleveland in 1983 and has since amassed an expansive amount of experience while working in operations, customer service and sales. Promoted as the Cleveland Branch Manager in 1989 and then Regional Vice President of the Transatlantic Region, Mr. Berger has always advocated that KWE employees should strive for zero mistakes and taking pride in a job well done. In 1999, with a need to unify KWE’s network and database as KWE continues to grow globally, Mr. Berger led a team of unrelenting and dedicated staff to successfully launch the Unified Freight System (UFS) making KWE USA the first subsidiary to do so.

Born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio, Mr. Berger attended St. Ignatius High School and earned a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with an emphasis on International Marketing from Cleveland State University. Growing up, his parents taught him to appreciate the value of hard work, independence, and humility which he has instilled in his three children.

In his role as Senior Vice President of Operations with oversight over the Information Technology, Import and Export Compliance departments, his efforts are focused on the implementation of KWE’s new global computer system throughout the KWE USA network, operations standardization, and gateway operations. His long held principle has been to give 100% all the time – whatever the odds, an honest effort ultimately pays off for the customers, the company, and the individual.
Nelson T. Coe, Executive Officer, Deputy Chief Officer KWEHQ
Nelson T. Coe is the Deputy Chief Officer of the KWE Corporate Sales & Marketing Group in Japan Headquarters. Mr. Coe is also Executive Officer of the Executive Officer Committee for KWE USA. Nelson has over 27 years of logistics and industry related experience, primarily on the international side working with imports and exports, both air and sea.

Currently Mr. Coe is the Executive Leader & Sponsor for the Corporate Sales & Marketing Group of KWE USA., Executive Support of all CSM Contracts, Global CSM Sales Support, KWE USA Branch Manager Support for Major Accounts, KWE Global Accounts Support, KWE Project Support, KWE Corporate Sales Training, and KWE Global Sea Freight Support. In addition, Mr. Coe is the executive sponsor for the Marketing & Pricing Development of KWE Inc.

Prior to becoming the Executive Leader for Corporate Sales & Marketing, Mr. Coe was the VP for all import, export, customs brokerage, sales and operational activities for the Southeast Region of KWE USA, including Texas, Georgia, the Carolinas and other Southeastern states, as well as Puerto Rico.

Mr. Coe’s previous assignments at KWE include RVP for the East Region, Assistant RVP for the Central Region and branch manager assignments in Cleveland and Cincinnati. He originally joined KWE as Sales Manager in the company's New York City branch office. Before joining KWE, Mr. Coe worked in a sales capacity for Logistics Providers BAX Global and Emery Worldwide, managing the New York and Connecticut territories.

Mr. Coe is a proud seven year veteran of the United States Marines Corp, where he achieved several commendations as well as meritorious promotions. In 1984, Mr. Coe was Honorably Discharged with the final rank of Staff Sergeant.
Jay Miyagi, Executive Officer, Senior VP, Business Development Department

Takashi “Jay” Miyagi is Senior Vice President of the Business Development Department (BDD), and oversees proactive projects to bolster KWE USA sales performance. His wealth of experience across Japan and US offices lends him critical insights on essential aspects of KWE’s business. Jay’s leadership and management have vastly improved KWE’s sales initiatives, including CRM development, marketing, RFP pricing, business implementation, and account management. Jay is also one of the key figures in KWE USA’s joint collaboration team with APL Logistics after the latter’s purchase by KWE in 2015.


Born and raised in Tokyo, Japan, Jay attended Hosei University and earned Bachelor of Letters in English Literature. His journey with KWE began in 1987, where he joined Kintetsu World Express Japan as part of the export sales team in Tokyo.


In 1995, Jay transferred to the KWE Los Angeles Export branch as Sales Manager, and was later promoted to Branch Manager of KWE Portland in 1999. Jay was reassigned as Import Branch Manager for KWE San Francisco in 2001, and took additional assignments at San Francisco’s Export and Ocean branches until March 2008, when he transferred to KWE Japan’s Shinjuku Import sales office as Deputy Office Manager. In 2009, Jay returned to KWE USA as Director of Corporate Sales and Marketing. He was assigned as Vice President of the Business Development Department (BDD) following its reorganization in April 2014. In March 2016, Jay was elected as an executive officer.


Jay currently resides in Los Angeles, while his elder son and wife live in San Mateo, and his younger son attends Brown University in Rhode Island.

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