2021 Asia Game Changer West Awards Virtual GalaVIEW EVENT DETAILS
Honoring Innovative Leaders Impacting Asia and the World
Please join us to stand in solidarity with Asians and Asian Americans – by honoring remarkable and inspiring contributions to the community and across the globe.
Asia Society Northern California's third annual Asia Game Changer West Awards Virtual Gala will take place on Thursday, April 8, 2021. All of our honorees are Bay Area stars. We invite you to come together for the event to support and be inspired by the incredible innovation of our honorees. This program is complimentary and open to the global community.
Asia Game Changer West Awards are bestowed to individuals, organizations, and movements that have inspired, enlightened, and shown true leadership in areas that reflect Asia Society’s core pillars of policy and business, arts and culture, and education.
2021 Asia Game Changer West Honorees:
- Grace Lee, CDC advisor on vaccine safety and professor of pediatrics at Stanford University School of Medicine
- Tsu-Jae King Liu, first woman dean of engineering at the University of California, Berkeley
- Eun Sun Kim, first woman music director at a major American opera company, San Francisco Opera
- Zheng Chongbin, light & space installation artist, currently on display at the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco
Presenters for the evening include:
- The Honorable Kevin Rudd, Asia Society President and CEO
- Carol Christ, 11th Chancellor of the University of California, Berkeley
- Kelly Knox, West Coast Outreach Lead for Community Outreach at Southwest Airlines
- Elaine Kwok, Director of 20th / 21st Century Art, Asia Pacific at Christie’s
- Lloyd B. Minor, MD, Carl and Elizabeth Naumann Dean of the Stanford University School of Medicine and Asia Society Northern California Board Member
- Matthew Shilvock, Tad and Dianne Taube General Director of the San Francisco Opera
- Ken Wilcox, Asia Society Northern California Chair
- Jay Xu, Director and CEO of the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco and Asia Society Northern California Board Member
- Margaret Conley, Executive Director of Asia Society Northern California
The evening will feature performances from local Bay Area artists:
- Dholrhythms Dance Company, all women group dedicated to promoting the artistic and cultural heritage of India by sharing rhythms of Punjab through classes and performances
- Zhengyi Bai, Tenor and 3rd Year Adler Fellow at San Francisco Opera accompanied by Carrie-Ann Matheson, Artistic Director of the San Francisco Opera Center and Merola Opera Program
This program is complimentary and open to the global community. Suggested donation is USD 250.00. Your support helps our mission of building bridges between Asia and the United States. Asia Society Northern California connects the diverse local community of San Francisco Bay Area with a wide network of global leaders and visionaries in the fields of policy, business, arts & culture, education, and technology/innovation.
Asia Society Northern California is happy to partner with renowned San Francisco eatery House of Nanking to offer a special dinner menu for two on Thursday, April 8. Those joining our program from San Francisco on April 8 can order the special "Asia Society Gala Menu" from House of Nanking until 8:00 p.m. Pacific through Grubhub, Uber Eats, DoorDash or Caviar. Menu items include Famous Nanking Sesame Chicken and Panfried Garlic Fish with Jade Spinach.
Watch highlights from last year's 2020 Asia Game Changer West Awards:
See more from our inaugural 2019 Asia Game Changer West Awards.
Throughout our live broadcast on April 8, audience members will have an opportunity to bid on an original piece of artwork generously donated by honoree Zheng Chongbin (pictured, left) and a wine tasting experience among art sculptures at The Donum Estate in Sonoma (pictured, below).
Live auction bidding is now open and will conclude by Thursday, April 8 at 6:00 p.m. Pacific during our live program. If you are interested in submitting a bid for one or more auction items, email email@example.com.
Asia Society Northern California members in attendance will be entered into a sweepstakes to receive Southwest Airlines flight e-passes, good for use until July 2022. Sweepstakes awardees will be announced live during our gala program.
Date: Thursday, April 8, 2021 from 5:00 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. Pacific
- 5:00 p.m. Program Begins
- 6:30 p.m. Program Concludes
- 6:30 p.m. VIP Reception for Groundbreaker and Innovator Members with Direct Access to Game Changers
- 7:00 p.m. VIP Reception Concludes
Link to join virtually via Zoom will be emailed the day before and an hour before the program is scheduled to begin by Rexille Uy, Director of Programs (firstname.lastname@example.org). This will be a webinar program; attendees will not appear on camera and will participate via the Q&A box.
For information on access to our VIP Reception, donations, sponsorships, and auction items please email Palarp Jumpasut, Director of Partnerships at PJumpasut@asiasociety.org.
Meet the Honorees
Professor of Pediatrics (Infectious Diseases) at the Lucile Salter Packard Children’s Hospital, Stanford University
Dr. Lee is Professor of Pediatrics at Stanford University School of Medicine and Associate Chief Medical Officer for Practice Innovation at Stanford Children’s Health. In her current role, Dr. Lee primarily serves as a clinical and administrative leader for the health system focused on bridging quality, research and implementation for the organization.
She sits on the CDC's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), which develops recommendations for U.S. vaccine use. Dr. Lee is a member of the COVID-19 Vaccines Workgroup and Chair of the COVID-19 Vaccine Safety Technical Subgroup. View a list of her recent publications on the topic here.
Dr. Lee previously served as the Principal Investigator (PI) on the CDC-funded Vaccine Safety Datalink project, Associate Director of the FDA-funded Mini-Sentinel Project, PI of an AHRQ-funded grant to develop a national surveillance definition for pediatric ventilator-associated events and to identify potential intervention bundles to improve quality of care, and PI of an AHRQ-funded grant to evaluate the health and economic impact of the CMS Hospital-Acquired Conditions and Value-Based Purchasing policies.
Tsu-Jae King Liu
Dean and Roy W. Carlson Professor of Engineering, University of California, Berkeley
Dr. Liu is Dean and Roy W. Carlson Professor of Engineering at the University of California, Berkeley. She is internationally recognized in academia and industry for her innovations in semiconductor technology, and is highly regarded for her achievements as a teacher, mentor and administrator.
Liu was born in Ithaca, New York while her parents, who immigrated to the United States from Taiwan, were graduate students at Cornell University. Growing up in the San Francisco Bay Area during the tech boom, Liu was influenced to pursue a career in engineering and ended up earning her B.S., M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in electrical engineering from Stanford University. She joined the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences (EECS) at UC Berkeley as an assistant professor in 1996.
As a researcher, Liu has authored or co-authored more than 500 publications and holds 96 U.S. patents in the field of integrated-circuit devices and technology. She is best known for co-developing an advanced fin-shaped field-effect transistor design, dubbed “FinFET,” that can be scaled down in physical dimensions to below 25 nanometers. Today, FinFETs are used in all leading-edge microprocessor chips.
Liu became the 13th dean of the College of Engineering in 2018, and is the first woman to hold that position at UC Berkeley. In this leadership role, she has bolstered efforts to recruit outstanding new faculty members who value diversity, equity and inclusion, and to enhance the success and well-being of all engineering students at Berkeley. She aims to effect a cultural transformation within the college – and within the field of engineering in general – to be more welcoming, inclusive and socially connected, to help ensure that engineering innovations have broad, positive impact with minimal unintended negative consequences.
Eun Sun Kim
Caroline H. Hume Music Director Designate, San Francisco Opera
Born and raised in South Korea, Eun Sun Kim has been appointed the Caroline H. Hume Music Director of San Francisco Opera. Only the fourth person to occupy this position in the company's nearly 100-year history, Kim’s tenure as Music Director begins August 1, 2021. She made her highly anticipated company debut conducting Rusalka in 2019. The San Francisco Chronicle said of the performance: “Presiding over everything, in a company debut of astonishing vibrancy and assurance, was conductor Eun Sun Kim, who drew glorious playing from the Opera Orchestra and paced every scene freely but precisely.”
Her presence in North America was first established with performances of Verdi's Requiem with the Cincinnati Symphony and La traviata with Houston Grand Opera, with the latter earning her an appointment as the company’s first Principal Guest Conductor in twenty-five years. Ms. Kim has enjoyed recent North American successes at Los Angeles Opera, Washington National Opera, and Houston Grand Opera, where The New York Times pronounced her “a major star…with great sensitivity and flexibility.” Her debut with the Los Angeles Philharmonic was quickly followed by debut engagements with Oregon Symphony and Seattle Symphony, and her triumphant return to the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra was hailed by the Business Courier as “impeccable…a dynamic presence, illuminating details of the score with clarity and expressive power.” Major upcoming debuts include concerts with the New York Philharmonic and productions with Lyric Opera of Chicago and the Metropolitan Opera.
Kim studied composition and conducting in her hometown of Seoul before continuing her studies in Stuttgart, where she graduated with distinction. Directly after graduation, she was awarded First Prize in the International Jesús López-Cobos Opera Conducting Competition at the Teatro Real Madrid.
Light & Space Installation Artist
Born in Shanghai, Zheng Chongbin lives and works in San Francisco Bay Area. Throughout his career of three decades, Zheng has held the classical Chinese ink tradition and Western pictorial abstraction in productive mutual tension. Systematically exploring and deconstructing their conventions and constituents—figure, texture, space, geometry, gesture, materiality—he has developed a distinctive body of work that makes the vitality of matter directly perceptible. Central to Zheng’s art is the notion of the world as always in flux, consisting of flows of matter and energy that repeatedly cohered and dissipated.
A resident of the San Francisco Bay Area for over three decades, Zheng is inspired by the region's distinctive atmospheric and environmental effects and rich ecologies, as well as by the California light and space movement. Zheng’s work can be found in the collections, among others, of the British Museum, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Brooklyn Museum, Chicago Art Institute, the Orange County Museum of Art in California, M+ in Hong Kong, the Daimler Art Collection in Stuttgart, Germany, the DSL Collection in France, and the Marina Bay Sands in Singapore.
Meet the Presenters
Margaret Conley, a Bay Area native, is the Executive Director of Asia Society Northern California. Margaret was based in Asia for several years as a television news correspondent with ABC News in Jakarta and Tokyo, and with Bloomberg Television in Shanghai. She was part of the global ABC team that won a News and Documentary Emmy Award for presidential inauguration coverage. Her interviews include Howard Schultz, Richard Branson, Ban Ki-Moon, LeBron James and Beyoncé. She has a bachelor’s degree from Columbia University and a master’s in journalism from the University of Hong Kong, which specializes in coverage of Asia. Margaret was selected as one of the Most Influential Women in Bay Area Business by the San Francisco Business Times in 2019. She is a member of the International Women's Forum.
The Honorable Kevin Rudd is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Asia Society, as of January 1st, 2021 and President of the Asia Society Policy Institute. He served as Australia’s 26th Prime Minister (2007-2010, 2013) and as Foreign Minister (2010-2012). He is also a leading international authority on China. He began his career as a China scholar, serving as an Australian diplomat in Beijing before entering Australian politics.
Carol Christ began her term as the 11th chancellor of the University of California, Berkeley on July 1, 2017. A celebrated scholar of Victorian literature, Christ is also well known as an advocate for quality, accessible public higher education, a proponent of the value of a broad education in the liberal arts and sciences, and a champion of women’s issues and diversity on college campuses. Christ spent more than three decades as a professor and administrator at UC Berkeley before serving as president of Smith College, one of the country’s most distinguished liberal arts colleges, from 2002 to 2013. She returned to Berkeley in January 2015 to direct the campus’s Center for Studies in Higher Education, and was appointed interim executive vice chancellor and provost in April 2016 before being named chancellor in March 2017.
Kelly Knox is the West Coast Outreach Lead for Community Outreach at Southwest Airlines. She started her career at Southwest Airlines in 2011 after graduating from Florida State University with a Bachelor's degree in Marketing. Kelly joined Southwest as an intern on the Community Affairs & Grassroots team and was hired full-time to work in Customer Relations, handling escalated calls on behalf of the Executive Office, and soon after was promoted to Team Leader. In March of 2015, Kelly returned to her roots at the Community Affairs & Grassroots Team, where she was responsible for managing Southwest's grassroots outreach programs, such as the Congressional Art Competition, as well as leading the airline's local outreach coordination. In her current role as West Coast Outreach Lead, Kelly champions causes that matter the most to the communities in California, Hawaii, Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Montana and Nevada.
Elaine Kwok is Director of 20th / 21st Century Art, Asia Pacific at Christie's. As Director, Chairman’s Office and Auctioneer, Elaine Kwok is responsible for business development and top client relationships in Asia. Before joining the Chairman’s Office, Kwok ran Christie’s Education in Asia, a program she started in 2010 to inspire collectors and enthusiasts to engage with the art world. Kwok is Christie’s principal auctioneer in Asia: in 2018, she sold Wood and Rock by Su Shi for US$60 million, the most expensive work of art that Christie’s has ever sold in Asia; in 2020, she was the auctioneer representing Asia in ONE, a pioneering global live auction that took place in consecutive sessions in Hong Kong, Paris, London, and New York. Kwok became the first Christie’s auctioneer to pass the China auctioneer license exam in 2015. Kwok serves on the Museum Advisory Committee of Leisure and Cultural Services Department in Hong Kong. She is also Vice Chair of the Executive Committee of the Friends of Hong Kong Museum of Art, and has been honoured as 40 Under 40 Asia Pacific by Apollo Magazine in 2016. Before joining the auction industry, Kwok worked at Goldman Sachs and The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. A Hong Kong native, she holds a BA from Harvard University, an MA from School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, and an MBA from Stanford University.
Lloyd B. Minor, MD is a scientist, surgeon, and academic leader. He is the Carl and Elizabeth Naumann Dean of the Stanford University School of Medicine, a position he has held since December 1, 2012. He is also a professor of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery and a professor of Bioengineering and of Neurobiology, by courtesy, at Stanford University. As dean, Dr. Minor plays an integral role in setting strategy for the clinical enterprise of Stanford Medicine, an academic medical center that includes the Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford Health Care, and Stanford Children’s Health and Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford. He sits on the board of Asia Society Northern California.
Matthew Shilvock is the Tad and Dianne Taube General Director of San Francisco Opera. Now in his fifth season as general director, Shilvock is responsible for all artistic and business aspects of the organization, overseeing a repertory season of mainstage opera productions and concerts, education and community programming, new digital content initiatives, and young artist training programs. Passionate about telling profound stories of humanity through the total art-form of opera, he is committed to pioneering new approaches to producing large-scale opera in the 21st century and creating impactful, reciprocal connections with the community. In recent seasons, Shilvock has presented the world premieres of two major new operas, John Adams’ Girls of the Golden West and Bright Sheng’s Dream of the Red Chamber; established the company’s first Department of Diversity, Equity and Community; and, in 2019, appointed conductor Eun Sun Kim as San Francisco Opera’s next music director to lead the company through its 2022–23 centennial and into the future.
Ken Wilcox is Chairman of the Board of Asia Society Northern California and currently serves as Emeritus Chairman of Silicon Valley Bank and was Vice Chairman of SPD Silicon Valley Bank. He was previously the CEO of SVB Financial Group. In that role, he successfully pursued a strategy of expansion and diversification, while remaining focused on the group’s core niches of technology, life sciences, venture capital and premium wineries. Mr. Wilcox serves as Treasurer of the Asian Art Museum and is on the Board of the 21st Century China Center. Also, he is a member of the board of the Equilibrium Capital Group, and Chief Credit Officer of Columbia Lake Venture Debt Fund. He is also an adjunct professor and member of International Advisory Board at Fudan University in Shanghai. Mr. Wilcox was a member of the board of directors of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco from 2006 to 2012.
Dr. Jay Xu has served as director and CEO of the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco since 2008, and he is the first Chinese American director at a major American art museum. Xu is committed to deepening understanding of Asian art and culture in the global context, and to advocating the art museum as an essential platform for cross-cultural understanding. Xu earned his MA and PhD in early Chinese art and archaeology at Princeton University, and has had nearly forty years of international museum experience as a research scholar, curator, and museum director. He previously served as assistant to the museum director at the Shanghai Museum; research fellow at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; curator of Chinese art at the Seattle Art Museum. In 2015, Dr. Xu became the first Asian American museum director elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He sits on the board of Asia Society Northern California.
MEET THE PERFORMERS
Dholrhythms Dance Company, based in San Francisco Bay Area, is an organization dedicated to promoting the artistic and cultural heritage of India by sharing rhythms of Punjab through classes, workshops, performances and events. Since its inception in 2003, the diverse group of women who are part of Dholrhythms Dance Company have become one of the most talked about groups in the San Francisco Bay Area. Dholrhythms has been featured at landmark platforms and stages in San Francisco Bay Area and beyond including War Memorial Opera House, Asian Art Museum, De Young Museum, SF City Hall, Yerba Buena Center For The Arts, Stern Grove Festival, The Fillmore, Oakland Museum of California, TedxSF, and more. To learn about Dholrhythms' virtual offerings during shelter-in-place, visit the Dholrhythms website: https://dholrhythms.com/
Zhengyi Bai is a tenor and 3rd Year Adler Fellow at San Francisco Opera. He made his San Francisco Opera company debut as Remendado in Carmen and also appeared as the Dancing Master and Lamplighter in Manon Lescaut. Bai was a participant of the 2018 Merola Opera Program, where he appeared as Alessandro in Il Re Pastore. Born in Shandong province of China, Bai flourished in his voice studies, completing his bachelor and master’s degrees in Shandong, China, and obtaining his graduate certificate from the University of Southern California’s Thornton School of Music.
Carrie-Ann Matheson enjoys a multi-faceted international career as a pianist, conductor and educator, and is the newly appointed Artistic Director of the San Francisco Opera Center and Merola Opera Program. A native of Canada, Ms. Matheson began her career at the Metropolitan Opera, where she was an assistant conductor, prompter and pianist. In 2014, she joined the conducting staff at Opernhaus Zurich, and greatly expanded her European performing career. Especially in demand as a recital pianist, she has performed with many of the world’s most renowned opera singers, including Rolando Villazón, Jonas Kaufmann, Piotr Beczala, Benjamin Bernheim, Diana Damrau, Barbara Bonney and Joyce DiDonato.
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