March 4, 2011

Arthur E. “Bud” Klauser, 87, who opened the Washington lobbying office of Mitsui & Co. (USA), the American subsidiary of Japan’s oldest trading company, died Feb. 14 at a retirement community in Charleston, S.C. He had congestive heart failure.

Mr. Klauser was a longtime specialist in government relations and public affairs, and he had extensive experience working in Japan with the CIA and international businesses such as Dow Corning.

He worked for Mitsui & Co. in Washington for more than 10 years before retiring in about 1990.

Mr. Klauser wrote many papers and lectured on Japanese business culture, trading companies and U.S.-Japanese business relations. He collected Japanese art and artifacts, which he subsequently donated to charities.

Arthur Ebbert Klauser was born in Toledo and raised in Evanston, Ill. He attended DePauw University in Indiana, where he was a drummer in a campus jazz band.

He left DePauw for Army service during World War II. After Japanese-language training, he went to Japan during the postwar U.S. occupation. After his Army tour, he received bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Michigan, where he did further graduate work in Japanese and Chinese history.

He spent several years with the CIA, based mostly in Japan, before graduating from Yale Law School in 1958. He was an executive with Royal Crown Cola International, American Machine and Foundry, and Pfizer International before joining Dow Corning in 1967.

He was the Washington-based vice president of government relations for Dow Corning before being hired by Mitsui in 1979.

His memberships included St. Alban’s Episcopal Church and the Cosmos Club, both in Washington. He moved to Charleston from the District in 1999.

His wife, the former Ruth Anne Geise, who once sang professionally as Bix Brent, died in 1972 after 12 years of marriage. He had no immediate survivors.

— Adam Bernstein

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