Friday November 16, 2018

U.S.-CHINA POLICY FOUNDATION HOLDS 20TH ANNUAL GALA DINNER

The Mayflower Hotel
November 18, 2015

The US-China Policy Foundation (USCPF) Annual Gala, held November 18, 2015 at the Mayflower Hotel in Washington, DC, proved a fitting way to celebrate the Foundation’s 20th anniversary. USCPF has worked tirelessly to enrich mutual understanding between the United States and China throughout the past two decades.

Attendance at the Gala included diplomats from the Chinese, French, Nepalese, Philippine, Singaporean, and Vietnamese embassies; representatives of American and Chinese business communities; and China scholars; former U.S. Ambassadors to China; and government officials.  The Gala was co-chaired by Ambassador James Sasser, Former U.S. Ambassador to China and Former U.S. Senator from Tennessee and Ambassador Richard Solomon, former Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs and former U.S. Ambassador to the Philippines.   

Gala guests were met with a cocktail reception in the East Room, and subsequently moved to the Grand Ballroom for the dinner program. Ambassador Sasser Welcomed the 160 dinner guests and congratulated the U.S.-China Policy Foundation on its impressive 20-year record.

After dinner, USCPF President and Co-Founder, Dr. Chi Wang, opened up the award presentations. Dr. Wang presented an Outstanding Achievement Award in Public Service to The Honorable Elaine L. Chao, who served as the 24th U.S. Secretary of Labor (2001-2009) and is currently Chair of the Ruth Mulan Chu Chao Foundation. Dr. Wang also presented an Outstanding Achievement Award in Philanthropy to the entire Chao Family and the Ruth Mulan Chu Chao Foundation, particularly recognizing Dr. James S.C. Chao, Secretary Elaine L. Chao, and Ms. Angela Chao. More information about Secretary Chao and her family can be found here.

Secretary Chao spoke about her parents’ journey to the United States and the challenges they overcame adjusting to a new country. In describing her parents, Secretary Chao said, “My parents’ story is one of enduring love, family, faith, contribution to society, and the power of education. Both my parents led values-laden life that exemplified diligence, determination, courage, and hope in the face of great adversity.”  The Chao Family’s outstanding model of Asian-American philanthropy encourages people to transcend  cultural  barriers, embrace diversity, and build a peaceful future. These values are in perfect alignment with the U.S.-China Policy Foundation’s mission to promote mutual understanding between the U.S. and China. A full transcript of Secretary Chao’s speech can be found here.

Ambassador Sasser then presented the Outstanding Achievement Award in U.S.-China Military Relations  to Admiral William J. Fallon. Admiral Fallon is a retired U.S. Navy four-star admiral who previously served as the head of the Central and Pacific Commands. Admiral Fallon began his acceptance speech by ascribing credit for  promoting U.S.-China relations to his wife, Mary, who did the “real work” when he was stationed in Asia by meeting the civilians living nearby. Humility aside, the achievements of Admiral Fallon’s more than 40-year career are real, and span a resumption of military engagement with China, new outreach to India, a new agreement on a strategic framework with Japan, and humanitarian assistance to the victims of the 2004 Tsunami in Southeast Asia. Two of the Admiral’s daughters also attended the event. More information about Admiral Fallon can be found here.

After the awards were presented, Ambassador Sasser invited our special dinner speaker to the microphone. Amidst recent developments in Sino-American relations, the speech by Congressman Rick Larsen (D-WA) resonated with the audience. Congressman Larsen discussed the various “hopes and hurdles” facing the U.S.-China relationship. The full text of his remarks can be found here. Larsen  is the Co-Founder and Co-Chair of the Congressional U.S.-China Working Group (USCWG), charged with making recommendations on the multifaceted relationship between the two countries. More information about Congressman Larsen and the bipartisan USCWG can be found here.

Closing remarks were offered by Ambassador Solomon and Dr. Chi Wang. Ambassador Solomon, who also served as the Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs and the President of the United States Institute of Peace (1993-2012) congratulated USCPF and reflected on the beginnings of the Foundation. He even asked Mrs. Martha Holdridge, widow of the late Ambassador John H. Holdridge, to join him at the podium. Ambassador Holdridge was a founding member of the U.S.-China Policy Foundation and was a participant in Dr. Henry Kissinger’s historic 1971 trip to open up relations with China.

The 20th Annual Gala was the culmination of another successful year for USCPF under the stewardship of its Co-Founder and current Chairman, Dr. Chi Wang, which included co-hosting the welcome banquet for President Xi Jinping during his September visit, several panel discussions,  two Policymakers Trips to China, photo and art exhibits, and other event and activities.

The U.S.-China Policy Foundation would like to thank all the gala speakers, guests, and the staff at the Mayflower Hotel for making this event a success. We would also like to give a special thanks to our sponsors. As a non-profit organization, we truly would not be able to continue the work we do without the generous support of our sponsors. More information about this year’s gala dinner, including photo, media, and video links, can be found below.

Links to More Information

Gala Program
Gala Videos

Gala Photos
Media Links
Gala Sponsors
Gala Details

Gala Sponsors
Sponsors