New Year's Reception 2024 in Düsseldorf

Remarks by Minister-President Hendrik Wüst, U.S. Consul General Pauline Kao, AmCham Germany President Simone Menne, Regional Chapter Chairs Theresa Winkels and Frank Jørgensen
Pictured above: Chapter Chair Theresa Winkels, U.S. Consul General Pauline Kao, Minister-President Hendrik Wüst, AmCham Germany President Simone Menne, Chapter Chair Frank Jørgensen (Photo Copyright: Michael Lübke)

On January 16, 2024, AmCham Germany hosted its first New Year’s Gala Reception of the season in Düsseldorf.

Our speakers Minister-President Hendrik Wüst, U.S. Consul General Pauline Kao, AmCham Germany President Menne and Regional Chapter Chairs Theresa Winkels and Frank Jørgensen joined our members from North Rhine-Westphalia in ringing in the New Year together in the spirit of transatlantic partnership and friendship.

Opening the evening, Theresa Winkels, one of our Chapter Chairs, pointed out the difference we can all make in the special year 2024.

AmCham Germany President Simone Menne continued by emphasizing how this will be another year of disruptive transformation. In light of these challenges, it is essential that we look for global solutions, as nationalism and protectionism are not the answer. AmCham Germany and its members share common values such as human rights, democracy and free speech. After all, AmCham Germany is a melting pot of members coming from different cultures, backgrounds and companies. Menne encouraged our members to remain optimistic and take initiative rather than waiting for challenges to be resolved on their own.

U.S. Consul General Pauline Kao then invited guests to imagine the year 2025 and work together to fulfill their goals until then. She pointed out that our partnership is based on three pillars: security, prosperity and shared values, and also placed transatlantic relations in a geopolitical context with the war in Ukraine and Gaza. Furthermore, she touched on the importance of 2024 for major elections in many countries around the world, and also highlighted the opportunities presented by the NRW-USA Year. In closing, U.S. Consul General Kao refered to two quotes by Martin Luther King Jr.: "Out of the mountain of despair, a stone of hope" and "the time is always right to do the right thing."

In his keynote speech, Minister-President Hendrik Wüst underscored the importance of transatlantic partnership and the important role that U.S. companies play in North-Rhine Westphalia. "North Rhine-Westphalia and the United States are closely linked with each other," says Wüst. "We are faced with the same big challenges: The transition to green industry, the strengthening of security and defence policy and the struggle against antisemitism. Together, we are filling the transatlantic relations with life. This is what the NRW-USA Year 2023/2024 represents."

A big thank you to our speakers, guests and in particular our sponsors, without whom this event would not have been possible:

Platinum Sponsors: Janssen-Cilag GmbH, City of Düsseldorf, UPS, Messe Düsseldorf
Gold Sponsors: Bird & Bird, BNP Paribas, Düsseldorf Airport, KPMG, NRW.Global Business, Siemens, International School on the Rhine
Mobility Partner: Uber
Supporter: Teekanne
Partners: Düsseldorf Convention, Hotel KÖ59 and SIGMA

Tidarat Schneider

Manager, Strategic Partnerships, Regional Coordination & Events