The former logo dates back to around 1976. An article by Kathy Ono says that the first image was an abstract chain design on a brochure titled, “You have a friend in Japan”. In 1978 a mimeograph was purchased, and the vertical logo was designed by Ida Orito-Salis.
“The four black lines may have been intended to represent the four main islands of Japan, the three white lines, the three districts - Northern (Kanto), Central (Chubu-Tokai) and Southern (Kansai) that we had at that time. These two members moving through life together supporting and helping each other either as a chain or linked arms, the logo symbolizes our connection to each other as immigrants and sojourners in Japan as members of Japanese families.
In 2021, a logo competition was held to create a horizontal logo for use in today’s digital world. The winning logo was designed by four AFWJ members.
“We decided to simplify the links of the chains by removing the lines within. Their original representations no longer apply to our current districting and these fine lines do not reproduce well when reduced to smaller sizes. However, by keeping the original image, even without the lines, we feel the new design is simpler yet still represents the linking of female arms. This is how we continue to support each other and have maintained the strength of AFWJ over more than five decades. Our winning design is a ‘renewed’ logo, based on the original, with our arms still firmly entwined, a strong symbol of AFWJ.”