Seattle | January 15, 2020

Mr. Brad Smith
President of Microsoft Corporation

Brad Smith is the president of Microsoft, where he leads a team of more than 1,400 business, legal and corporate affairs professionals in 56 countries. He serves as the company’s chief legal officer and leads work on a wide range of issues involving the intersection between technology and society, including cybersecurity, privacy, ethics and artificial intelligence, human rights, immigration, philanthropy and environmental sustainability. Described by the New York Times as “a de facto ambassador for the technology industry at large,” Smith has testified numerous times before the U.S. Congress and other governments on key policy issues.

Agenda & Panels for Seattle 2020

Trade Policy

Bilateral Investment

Health and Medicine: New Models for Collaboration

Artificial Intelligence

Cyber Security

National Security & Diplomacy


Wendy Cutler
Asia Society

Speaker Details

Wendy Cutler joined the Asia Society Policy Institute (ASPI) as vice president in November 2015. She also serves as the managing director of the Washington D.C. Office. In these roles, she focuses on building ASPI’s presence in Washington —strengthening its outreach as a think/do tank —and on leading initiatives that address challenges related to trade and investment, as well as women’s empowerment in Asia. She joined ASPI following an illustrious career of nearly three decades as a diplomat and negotiator in the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR).

Jorge Guajardo
Former Mexican Ambassador to China

Speaker Details

Ambassador Guajardo has had an active career in government and significant experience in the private sector. He most recently served for six years in Beijing as the Mexican Ambassador to the People’s Republic of China. Prior to this, he was Consul General of Mexico to the US in Austin, Texas, and a Mexican congressional candidate in 2003. He previously served as Director of Communications for the Governor of Nuevo León, Mexico from 1997 to 2000.

Jessica Chen Weiss
Associate Professor of Government at Cornell University

Speaker Details

Jessica Chen Weiss is Associate Professor of Government at Cornell University. She is the author of Powerful Patriots: Nationalist Protest in China’s Foreign Relations (Oxford University Press, 2014). Her research appears in International Organization, China Quarterly, International Studies Quarterly, Journal of Conflict Resolution, Security Studies, Journal of Contemporary China, and Review of International Political Economy, as well as in the New York Times, Foreign Affairs, and Washington Quarterly. She was previously an assistant professor at Yale University and founded FACES, the Forum for American/Chinese Exchange at Stanford, while an undergraduate at Stanford University. Weiss is an editor at the Washington Post Monkey Cage blog and a term member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Born and raised in Seattle, Washington, she received her Ph.D. from the University of California, San Diego in 2008, where her dissertation won the 2009 American Political Science Association Award for best dissertation in international relations, law and politics.

Jenny Leonard

Speaker Details

Jenny Leonard has been a Bloomberg reporter in Washington, DC for three years and have covered the trade policy beat for two years. Prior to Bloomberg,  she covered the Trump administration and Capitol Hill for Inside U.S. Trade, and her print and video pieces were published by Vice News, USA TODAY, the Texas Tribune, the Marine Corps Times and McClatchy.

Anna Ashton
Director of Business Advisory Services, US-China Business Council

Speaker Details

Ms. Ashton has served as the director of business advisory services at the US-China Business Council. She leads staff across USCBC’s three offices in providing member companies with analysis of China’s commercial policies, business operating environment, and best practices; and also helps to develop and implement USCBC’s advocacy on behalf of member companies. Ms. Ashton has served as a China analyst in both public and private sector positions. She began her career at the Department of Defense, working on strategic China issues

Shan Huang

Speaker Details

Mr. Shan Huang is Deputy Managing Editor and Editorial Board Member of Beijing-based Caixin Media, equivalent to the Economist in China. He is charged with overseeing Caixin’s foreign desk and overseas branding efforts, with 15 years of experience in reporting on Chinese domestic economic & political situations, its external relations with focus on Chinese economic diplomacy.

Mr. Huang was a visiting fellow with the Blavatnik School of Government at the University of Oxford in the trinity term of 2018. He served as a senior research associate with the Kellogg Institute for International Studies at the University of Notre Dame for the period of August 2018 through May 2019.

Carly Ramsey
Political and Regulatory Risk Consulting for Greater China and North Asia

Speaker Details

Carly Ramsey, a director of global risk consulting firm, Control Risk. based in Shanghai, and she leads the political and regulatory risk division for Greater China and North Asia. She has a decade of experience in China advising multinationals how to engage the Chinese government and mitigate political and regulatory risk.

Nelson Dong
Executive Committee member, National Committee on U.S.-China Relations

Speaker Details

Nelson Dong is a Seattle-based senior partner with the Dorsey & Whitney international law firm.  He leads his firm’s international trade and national security law practice and is also co-head of its Asia Practice.  He has advised American companies, professional associations, universities and independent research institutes to operate in Greater China and elsewhere around the world for over 30 years.  He writes and teaches regularly in the intersection of technology and international law and has been an adjunct international law professor at Seattle University Law School.   He was a White House Fellow and Special Assistant to the U.S. Attorney General and took part in the Justice Department’s defense of President Jimmy Carter’s establishment of full diplomatic relations with the People’s Republic of China in 1979.  He has been an export control policy advisor to the U.S. Department of Commerce under two Administrations.  Nelson also later served as Deputy Associate Attorney General and as an Assistant U.S. Attorney, Criminal Division, in Boston.  He is a director and Executive Committee member of both the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations in New York City and of the Washington State China Relations Council in Seattle, taking an active role in many of their public programs intended to foster better public understanding about the many dimensions of the relations between the United States, Washington state and China.  He is an active member of the National Association of College and University Attorneys, the Council on Foreign Relations and the Committee of 100.  Nelson is a graduate of Stanford University and the Yale Law School, and he was the first Asian American trustee of Stanford University.

Rob Spiger
Principal Security Strategist, Microsoft

Speaker Details

Rob Spiger is a principal security strategist at Microsoft on the digital diplomacy team inside the customer security and trust organization. Rob leads the team’s policy work on the Internet of Things and Artificial Intelligence security.  Rob is an industry security expert with in-depth understanding of trusted computing technology and standards development. He has participated for over a decade in the Trusted Computing Group, a global standards organization and currently serves as the vice president. He collaborates with global technologists from industry, government and academic institutions who are devoted to advancing security technology research and innovation.  Previously he was responsible for technical program management of Windows security features as a part of the security and identity Team. Rob’s substantial industry experience also include his contributions at Avanade and Lockheed Martin.   He has degrees in computer science with honors and electrical engineering from the University of Washington.

Danit Gal
Keio University Global Research Institute

Speaker Details

Danit Gal is a Project Assistant Professor at the Cyber Civilizations Research Center at the Keio University Global Research Institute in Tokyo, Japan. She is interested in global strategic technology planning to maximize shared social benefit. Danit chairs the IEEE P7009 standard on the Fail-Safe Design of Autonomous and Semi-Autonomous Systems, and is an active member of the IEEE Global Initiative for Ethical Considerations in Autonomous and Intelligent Systems. She is also an affiliate at the Center for Information Technology Policy at Princeton University, and the Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University. Prior to joining Keio, Danit was a Yenching Scholar at Peking University and International Strategic Advisor to the iCenter at Tsinghua University in Beijing, China. Among her current projects is an ongoing study of the unanticipated consequences of AI under the Association of Pacific Rim Universities – Google research project ‘AI for Everyone: Building Trust in and Benefiting from the Technology’.

Xiaomeng Lu
Senior Policy Manager and China Practice Lead

Speaker Details

Xiaomeng Lu is Access Partnership’s Senior Policy Manager and China practice lead. She is well-versed in the technology policy world, specializing in standards, cybersecurity, sustainability, and market access issues. She has extensive experience throughout Asia, with a strong emphasis on China. This expertise includes how government agencies, indigenous companies, foreign businesses, industry groups, and media influence and interact with each other to form technology policy in Beijing and other Asian capitals. Her in-depth understanding of the Chinese market and Chinese people serve as the basis for valuable political and policy insight and analysis.  She has achieved favorable policy outcomes for Fortunate 100 technology companies across the governments of Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Pakistan, Taiwan, and UAE.

Before joining Access Partnership, Xiaomeng spent six years advocating for global high-tech companies at the Information Technology Industry Council where, among other initiatives, she led a coalition of industry groups that successfully secured the indefinite delay of a Chinese manufacturing regulation, saving global information technology manufacturers billions in potential losses. Her policy analyses have been quoted by the New York Times, Financial Times, Bloomberg, South China Morning Post, and Forbes.

Xiaomeng holds a Master’s Degree in International Trade Policy from Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey and a Bachelor’s Degree in International Economics and Trade from Renmin University of China.

Naomi Wilson
Senior Director of Policy, Asia

Speaker Details

Naomi Wilson serves as senior director of policy, Asia. Prior to joining ITI, Naomi served at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), where she most recently held the position of acting director for Asia-Pacific. In that capacity, she played a leading role on cybersecurity, law enforcement, and customs cooperation issues related to Asia and served as a senior advisor to Secretary Jeh Johnson. During her tenure at DHS, Naomi led development and implementation of priority policy initiatives for DHS engagement with China, including secretarial engagements and agreements. She worked closely with interagency colleagues to negotiate and implement agreements stemming from the September 2015 State visit between Presidents Barack Obama and Xi Jinping, including managing the U.S.-China High-Level Dialogue on Cybercrime and Related Issues for DHS.

Prior to joining DHS, Naomi served as a staffer on the Senate Committee on Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs and as a research assistant at the Center for Strategic & International Studies (CSIS).

Naomi holds a Bachelor’s degree in English and Master’s in International Affairs & National Security. In 2011, she completed intensive Chinese language training at Peking University. Naomi speaks advanced Mandarin and French and is a native of Connecticut.

Nigel Cory

Speaker Details

Nigel Cory is an associate director covering trade policy at the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF), a non-profit, non-partisan think tank that focuses on the intersection of technological innovation and public policy. He focuses on cross-border data flows, data governance, intellectual property, and how they each relate to digital trade and the broader digital economy. Cory has provided in-person testimony and written submissions and has published reports and op-eds relating to these issues in the United States, the European Union, Australia, China, India, and New Zealand, among other countries and regions, and he has completed research projects for international bodies such as the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation and the World Trade Organization. Prior to ITIF, he worked for eight years in Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, which included postings in Malaysia and Afghanistan and positions in Canberra working on G20 global economic and trade issues.

Karen Hao
MIT Technology Review

Speaker Details

Karen Hao is an AI reporter at MIT Technology Review, covering the field’s cutting edge research and social impact. Before joining TR, she was a tech reporter and data scientist at Quartz. In a past life, she was also an application engineer at the first startup to spin out of Alphabet’s X.

Joy Dantong Ma

Speaker Details

Joy Dantong Ma works at the intersection of data science and public policy. Currently she works as a data scientist in Chicago, where she leverages machine learning tools to analyze a multitude of policy issues, ranging from housing affordability to criminal justice. Previously, she was an Associate Director at the Paulson Institute, where she led a cross-functional team building interactive products on technology policy. Her work has been cited by the BBC, the New York Times, MIT Technology Review, Nature and others. Born in northeastern China, Joy completed her undergraduate education in Beijing and holds a master’s degree in public policy from Columbia University.

Jude Blanchette

Speaker Details

ude Blanchette holds the Freeman Chair in China Studies at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). Previously, he was engagement director at The Conference Board’s China Center for Economics and Business in Beijing, where he researched China’s political environment with a focus on the workings of the Communist Party of China and its impact on foreign companies and investors. Prior to working at The Conference Board, Blanchette was theassistant director of the 21st Century China Center at the University of California, San Diego.

Maggie Lewis
Professor of Law at Seton Hall University

Speaker Details

Maggie Lewis is a Professor of Law at Seton Hall University. She has been a Fulbright Senior Scholar at National Taiwan University, a visiting professor at Academia Sinica, a Term Member of the Council on Foreign Relations, a Public Intellectuals Program Fellow with the National Committee on United States-China Relations, and a delegate to the US-Japan Foundation’s US-Japan Leadership Program. Professor Lewis has participated in the State Department’s Legal Experts Dialogue with China, has testified before the Congressional-Executive Commission on China, and is a consultant to the Ford Foundation. Before joining Seton Hall, Professor Lewis served as a Senior Research Fellow at NYU School of Law’s U.S.-Asia Law Institute where she worked on criminal justice reforms in China.

Neysun Mahboubi
University of Pennsylvania

Speaker Details

Neysun A. Mahboubi is a Research Scholar of the Center for the Study of Contemporary China at the University of Pennsylvania, as well as a Lecturer in Law at Penn Law School.  He also hosts the CSCC Podcast.  His primary academic interests are in the areas of administrative law, comparative law, and Chinese law, and his current writing focuses on the development of modern Chinese administrative law.  He has chaired the international committee of the ABA Section of Administrative Law & Regulatory Practice, advised both the Asia Foundation and the Administrative Conference of the United States on Chinese administrative procedure reform, and moderates the Comparative Administrative Law Listserv hosted by Yale Law School.  Occasionally, he comments on Chinese legal developments for CGTN America.  He has taught at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School, the University of Connecticut School of Law, and Yale Law School.  Previously, he served as a trial attorney in the Civil Division (Federal Programs Branch) of the U.S. Department of Justice, and as a law clerk to Judge Douglas P. Woodlock of the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts. He holds a J.D. from Columbia Law School and an A.B. (Politics & EAS) from Princeton University.  You can follow him on Twitter @NeysunM

Wenchi Yu
Head of Global Public Policy at VIPKid

Speaker Details

Wenchi Yu is the Head of Global Public Policy at VIPKid, the world’s leading education technology platform company. She leads VIPKid’s public policy and social impact initiative, including the establishment of, a non-profit organization seed funded and incubated by VIPKid to promote equitable access to quality education through technology. Prior to joining VIPKid, Wenchi was the Head of Corporate Engagement for Goldman Sachs in Asia, where she led strategic philanthropy for stakeholder engagement and social impact in Asia. Before joining the private sector, she was a senior advisor on global women’s issues in the U.S. Department of State, and worked on the rule of law and civil society development in China in the U.S. Congress. Early on, she worked on women’s rights, human trafficking, and immigrant issues at various non-profit organizations.

Wenchi is a Nonresident Research Fellow at Harvard Kennedy School’s Ash Center, a life member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and an Asia 21 Fellow of Asia Society.

Graham Webster
Coordinating Editor of the Stanford-New America DigiChina Project

Speaker Details

Graham Webster is coordinating editor of the Stanford-New America DigiChina project and a fellow with New America. DigiChina is a collaborative effort to translate, contextualize, and analyze Chinese digital policy documents and commentary. He also writes the independent Transpacifica e-mail newsletter. He was previously a senior fellow and lecturer at Yale Law School, where he was responsible for the Paul Tsai China Center’s U.S.–China Track 2 dialogues for five years before leading programming on cyberspace and high-tech issues. In the past, he wrote a CNET News blog on technology and society from Beijing, worked at the Center for American Progress, and taught East Asian politics at NYU’s Center for Global Affairs. Graham holds a master’s degree in East Asian studies from Harvard University and a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University. He is based in California.


Samm Sacks
New America

Speaker Details

Samm Sacks is a Cybersecurity Policy and China Digital Economy Fellow at New America. Her research focuses on emerging information and communication technology (ICT) policies globally, particularly in China. She has worked on Chinese technology policy issues for over a decade, both with the U.S. government and in the private sector.

Kaiser Kuo

Speaker Details

Kaiser Kuo host of the Sinica Podcast, a weekly discussion of current affairs in China, and editor-at-large at He recently repatriated to the United States after 20 years in Beijing, where he worked as Director of International Communications for Baidu. Before that he was a technology correspondent for Red Herring magazine, and also worked as director of digital strategy, China, for Ogilvy & Mather in Beijing.

In May 2016, he was honored by the Asia Society with a leadership award for “revolutionizing the way people live, consume, socially interact, and civically engage.” He speaks frequently on topics related to politics, international relations, and technology in China.

Scott Kennedy

Speaker Details

Scott Kennedy is senior adviser and Trustee Chair in Chinese Business and Economics at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). A leading authority on Chinese economic policy, Kennedy has been traveling to China for over 30 years. His specific areas of expertise include industrial policy, technology innovation, business lobbying, U.S.-China commercial relations, and global governance. His articles have appeared in a wide array of policy, popular, and academic venues, including The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, and China Quarterly.

From 2000 to 2014, Kennedy was a professor at Indiana University (IU), where he established the Research Center for Chinese Politics & Business and was the founding academic director of IU’s China Office. Kennedy received his Ph.D. in political science from George Washington University, his M.A. in China Studies from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, and his B.A. from the University of Virginia.

Paul Scharre

Speaker Details

Paul Scharre is a Senior Fellow and Director of the Technology and National Security Program at the Center for a New American Security. He is the award-winning author of Army of None: Autonomous Weapons and the Future of War, which won the 2019 Colby Award and was named one of Bill Gates’ top five books of 2018. From 2008-2013, Mr. Scharre worked in the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) where he played a leading role in establishing policies on unmanned and autonomous systems and emerging weapons technologies.

Paul Krake
View from the Peak

Speaker Details

Paul has over 25 years’ experience as an economic and political strategist. He founded View from the Peak in 2011, seeing a need for a truly global, multi-asset class research platform that focuses on the interactions between public policy, economic trends, technology, and geopolitics. View from the Peak takes its name from Victoria Peak, the highest point on Hong Kong Island and the firm aims to look at the world from a 360-degree view with an Asian perspective. The firm has offices in Hong Kong, Chicago, and London. Prior to forming View from the Peak, Paul spent 15 years in Investment Banking and Asset Management.

Kristi Heim
Director of Communications at MGI (BGI Group)

Speaker Details

Kristi Heim is a senior executive with expertise in communications, international business development and diplomacy. Kristi has deep experience working in China and a proven track record of successfully managing international relationships, diverse teams and high-level initiatives. Kristi is passionate about using entrepreneurship and innovation to improve the lives of people around the world.

Michael Rawding
Former Head of Microsoft China

Speaker Details

Michael Rawding has an extensive background in the Asia region, having served as the President of Microsoft Greater China, Microsoft Japan, and Microsoft Asia.  He has also worked on a variety of cross-border leadership assignments during his tenure at Spencer Stuart, gaining an appreciation of both recruiting and developing local talent. Michael was previously Chairman of the Washington State China Relations Council, served on the Board of Governors at the Monterey Institute of International Studies, and is a member of the National Committee on US China Relations.