Asia Society Board Elects Renée Fleming, Tom Nides, and Viswanathan Shankar as New Trustees

SEOUL, June 12, 2014 – Asia Society announced today that three new members have been elected to its Board of Trustees: Renée Fleming, Tom Nides, and Viswanathan Shankar. The decision was made at the annual spring Board meeting, held this year in Seoul.

“With the addition of this group of accomplished leaders, Asia Society reaffirms its commitments to arts and culture, business, policy, and education,” said Trustee Cochairs Henrietta H. Fore and Ronnie C. Chan in a joint statement. “These new Board members will work with our other Trustees and our President and CEO Josette Sheeran in advancing the institution’s chief initiatives: the Asia Society Policy Institute, the Arts and Museum Network, and the Global Learning and Leadership Network.”

“We are delighted to have Renée Fleming, Tom Nides, and Viswanathan Shankar join our Board of Trustees,” said Asia Society President and CEO Josette Sheeran. “Each brings unique qualities and strengths that reflect our mission and will help guide us in the years to come.”

The new members join a board of 51 Trustees. Bios for the new board members follow. For more information, visit

Renée Fleming
One of the most beloved and celebrated musical ambassadors of our time, soprano Renée Fleming was given the National Medal of Arts, America's highest honor for an individual artist, in July 2013 by President Obama. Known as “the people’s diva” and winner of the 2013 Grammy Award for Best Classical Vocal Solo, she continues to grace the world’s greatest opera stages and concert halls, now extending her reach to include other musical forms and media. She brought her voice to a vast new audience in February of this year, as the first classical artist to sing the National Anthem at the Super Bowl.

As a musical stateswoman, she has been sought after on numerous distinguished occasions, from the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize ceremony to performances in Beijing during the 2008 Olympic Games to We Are One: The Obama Inaugural Celebration at the Lincoln Memorial concert.

Ms. Fleming has made several tours to Asia, and avidly follows the work of several Chinese artists. She participated in an Asia Society program organized by Orville Schell at the residence of the U.S. Ambassador to China Gary Locke in May 2013.

Ms. Fleming is currently a member of the Board of Trustees of the Carnegie Hall Corporation, the Board of Sing for Hope, and the Advisory Board of the White Nights Foundation of America. In 2010, she was named the first-ever Creative Consultant at Lyric Opera of Chicago, where she is also a member of the Board and a Vice President. She is currently curating the creation of a world-premiere opera based on the bestseller Bel Canto for Lyric Opera’s 2015-2016 season.

Tom Nides 
Managing Director and Vice Chairman, Morgan Stanley

Mr. Nides focuses on the Firm’s global clients and other key constituencies around the world. Prior to rejoining Morgan Stanley in March 2013 as Vice Chairman, Mr. Nides was Deputy Secretary of State appointed in December 2010. Before joining the Obama administration, Mr. Nides was the Chief Operating officer of Morgan Stanley from 2005 to 2010.

Before joining Morgan Stanley, Mr. Nides served as Worldwide President and Chief Executive Officer of Burson-Marsteller and as Chief Administrative Officer of Credit Suisse First Boston, the investment banking division of Zurich-based Credit Suisse Group.

Mr. Nides began his career on Capitol Hill, as Assistant to the Majority Whip of the U.S. House of Representatives and Executive Assistant to the Speaker of the House. Mr. Nides later served as Senior Vice President of Fannie Mae and as Chief of Staff to the U.S. Trade Representative.

Mr. Nides was appointed by President Obama to be Chairman of the Board of the Woodrow Wilson Center in September 2013. He also serves on the Board of the Urban Alliance Foundation, the Atlantic Council and is a Member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Prior to serving in government, Mr. Nides was the Chairman of the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association, on the Board of New York Cares Foundation and a member of the Advisory Board of the National Zoo. He is a graduate of the University of Minnesota.

Viswanathan Shankar 
Group Executive Director & Chief Executive Officer – Europe, Middle East, Africa and Americas, Standard Chartered Bank

Mr. Shankar joined Standard Chartered in 2001 as Group Head of Corporate Finance, and was appointed Group Head of Origination and Client Coverage in 2007. He was promoted to his current role in 2010.

In addition to his responsibilities at Standard Chartered, Shankar is a non-executive director of Majid Al Futtaim Holding LLC, a member of the board of the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore and board of trustees of SINDA. He is also a member of the Singapore Government’s National Integration Council.

Before joining Standard Chartered, Shankar worked with Bank of America for 19 years.

Mr. Shankar has a BSc in Physics from Loyola College in Chennai and a MBA from the Indian Institute of Management in Bangalore.

About the Asia Society
Asia Society is the leading educational organization dedicated to promoting mutual understanding and strengthening partnerships among peoples, leaders and institutions of Asia and the United States in a global context. Across the fields of arts, business, culture, education, and policy, the Society provides insight, generates ideas, and promotes collaboration to address present challenges and create a shared future.

Founded in 1956 by John D. Rockefeller 3rd, Asia Society is a nonpartisan, nonprofit institution headquartered in New York, with major centers in Hong Kong and Houston and offices in Los Angeles, Manila, Mumbai, San Francisco, Seoul, Shanghai, Sydney, and Washington, DC.

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