Bernard Krisher

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Bernard Krisher
Bernard Krisher in Tokyo.jpg
Born 1931
Frankfurt, Germany
Residence Tokyo, Japan
Nationality United States
Education Columbia University
Harvard University
Occupation Journalist, publisher of The Cambodia Daily; founder of World Assistance for Cambodia
Spouse(s) Akiko Krisher
Children two

Bernard Krisher (* August 9, 1931) was born in Frankfurt and left Germany in 1937 at the age of six via Paris and Lisbon eventually settling in New York City in January 1941 with his parents. At age 12, Krisher published his own magazine and edited his high school and Queens College newspapers. Later he worked for the New York Herald Tribune and the New York World-Telegram & Sun. After graduating from Queens College Krisher was drafted into the Army during the Korean War but due to his German language skills was stationed in Heidelberg at the US Army's press and information division. In 1958 he visited Japan for the first time. From 1959 to 1960 Krisher spent a year doing Japanese area and language studies at Columbia University as a Ford Foundation Advanced International Reporting Fellow. He joined Newsweek 's Tokyo bureau first as a stringer and eventually became bureau chief until 1980. In 1975 he was the first and only journalist ever do a to a one-on-one interview with the Japanese Emperor Hirohito (Tenno Showa).[1] He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

After retiring from Newsweek, Krisher joined Fortune Magazine as its Tokyo correspondent and at the same time joined Shinchosha, a large Japanese publishing company as its chief editorial advisor. There he founded the groundbreaking[2] and wildly successful weekly FOCUS magazine in 1981. Focus magazine has reached peak editions of up to 2 million per week in its heyday.[3]

Bernard Krisher is the Far East representative of MIT's Media Lab.[4] As such he collaborated with Nicholas Negroponte who was also one of the first to sponsor a school in Cambodia in Krisher's signature school building project.[5]


In 1993, Krisher founded and became chairman of American Assistance for Cambodia, a non-profit organization aimed at giving hope to the Cambodian people following the extermination of 2 million Cambodians during the Khmer Rouge regime

Cambodia Schools Project, school #363 Kampong Speu, Odong province

Krisher launched the charity Sihanouk Hospital Center of HOPE which treats the poor for free. By 2013 he has built over 550 schools, many of them with matching funds from the World Bank and Asian Development Bank. He also founded and publishes "The Cambodia Daily", a newspaper dedicated to setting up a sound foundation for a free press and training journalists. The Cambodia Daily was shut down by the Cambodian government in early 2018. In 2008, Krisher also founded The Burma Daily which aims to replicate the ideals and success of The Cambodia Daily.


  • with Norodom Sihanouk: "Sihanouk Reminisces: World Leaders I Have Known", Editions Duang Kamol; Bangkok, 1990 ISBN 978-9742105235
  • Japan as we lived it: can East and West ever meet? Tokyo, Japan : Yohan Publications, 1989
  • with Osamu Senna: Intabyū : Tennō kara Fuwa Tetsuzō made (インタビュ一 : 天皇から不破哲三まで /) Tokio, Saimaru Shuppankai (サイマル出版会,) 1976
  • with Eiichi Aoki Harvard Conversation - Hābādo no mita Nippon : Nihon wa nyūrīdā ni nareru ka? (ハーバードのみたニッポン : 日本はニューリーダーになれるか?) Tokio, Gurobyūsha (グロビュー社,) 1979


  • Recipient of the Second Iue Asia Pacific Culture Prize[6] 2003
  • Healing Cambodia Award, 2011[7]
  • Medal of Grand Officier de l'Ordre royal du Cambodge, 2008[8]

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