About Emily

A graduate of San Francisco public schools herself, Emily and husband Neal Taniguchi have two daughters who attended the district's signature Japanese Bilingual Bicultural Program (JBBP) at Rosa Parks Elementary School. Founded 40 years ago by community leaders and parents, including her own, JBBP continues to promote multiculturalism within the school district.


Effective Advocate for Public Education

Emily was a member of the Rosa Parks School Site Council, the JBBP Parent Teacher Community Council, and the Lowell Alumni Association Board of Directors. She formerly chaired the SFUSD Parent Advisory Council and served on the two recent successful initiatives supporting public schools in 2008 and 2010. As a school board member, Emily has focused her efforts on responding to the concerns of families on an individual basis, at the same time collaborating with her fellow school board members on such initiatives as anti-bullying, reforming the school meals program, supporting foreign language and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) programs, and the new Common Core Standards.


Diverse Professional Background

In her professional capacity, Emily serves as Executive Director of the San Francisco Department on the Status of Women, where she oversees a $4 million budget and a professional staff of 6 to promote the human rights of the women and girls of San Francisco. In partnership with community-based service providers and law enforcement agencies, Emily's work has contributed to the elimination of domestic violence homicides in San Francisco for the first time in over a decade. Previously, she served in the first Clinton White House as Director for International Economic Affairs (1993-1994), after working for AT&T Japan in Tokyo, and later worked in the International Bureau of the Federal Communications Commission.


Leader in Her Community

A Founding Sister of the Asian Pacific American Women's Leadership Institute, Emily is a graduate of the Emerge political leadership training program, Leadership San Francisco, and Leadership California. She has served on the boards of the Fort Mason Foundation, the Japanese American Citizens League (San Francisco, Tokyo, Washington, DC Chapters), and the Bryn Mawr Alumnae Association. She is currently on the board of Democratic Women in Action.


Distinguished Awards

This year, Emily received the Alumni of the Year Award from her alma mater, the UC San Diego Graduate School of International Relations & Pacific Studies, as well as the Outstanding Advocate for Women's Rights from the National Council of Jewish Women San Francisco Chapter. In 2009, Emily was named Woman of the Year by California State Senator Leland Yee and recognized for her contributions to the women's community by the Democratic Women's Forum.



Emily holds an AB in modern Japanese history from Bryn Mawr College, a master's from the Graduate School of International Relations & Pacific Studies at UC San Diego, and a PhD in communication from Stanford.



She resides in San Francisco with her husband Neal and their two daughters Junko Taniguchi, Chief Negotiator, and Izumi Murase, Chief Curiosity Officer of the Murase/Taniguchi household.