Asia Game Changer West Awards Virtual GalaVIEW EVENT DETAILS
Honoring Innovative Leaders Impacting Asia and the World
Join our second annual Asia Game Changer West Awards Virtual Gala on Tuesday, April 7, 2020. This is an important time for the global community to come together. We invite you to join us to hear the latest on COVID-19, and to be inspired by the incredible innovation of our honorees. Registration for this event is complimentary and can be accessed through Zoom.
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.
This year’s Game Changer West honorees are: Zoom CEO Eric Yuan, multimedia artist Yang Yongliang, entrepreneur Roopam Sharma, and founder Nanxi Liu (biographies below). Asia Society Trustee and Asia 21 Young Leader Duncan Clark will do a fireside chat with Eric Yuan, from Paris.
California Lieutenant Governor Eleni Kounalakis will give a keynote. Dr. Yvonne (Bonnie) Maldonado from Stanford University School of Medicine will provide an update on the Coronavirus (COVID-19). Dr. Yongwei Zhang, Group VP of BGI-Shenzhen, will share experience from on the ground in Wuhan, China.
Presenters include: VC Bill Tai, Evite CEO Victor Cho, Executive Director of the Contemporary Jewish Museum Lori Starr, Co-Founder & Managing Director of Nexus Venture Partners Naren Gupta, Asia Society Global President & CEO Ambassador Josette Sheeran, Asia Society Northern California Chair Ken Wilcox, and Asia Society Northern California Executive Director Margaret Conley.
Virtual locations for Gala presenters and honorees include: Hong Kong, New York, Stanford Medicine, Silicon Valley, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Paris – and from people’s homes.
We’re in this together – and we hope to see you online for this unique and memorable event.
*5:00 PM - 5:30 PM Pacific – Virtual Registration
5:30 PM - 7:00 PM Pacific – Virtual Gala
*Before our Gala, we will host a special VIP Virtual Reception with direct interactive access to our Game Changer West honorees.
For information on access to our VIP Virtual Reception, donations, and sponsorships please email Palarp Jumpasut, Director of Partnerships at PJumpasut@asiasociety.org.
Carry-Out / Ordering-In Options:
For those in the San Francisco and Silicon Valley areas during the Virtual Gala on April 7, we kindly suggest that you order from the following restaurants that have supported Asia Society Northern California:
Chef Chu's - Ordering Available through Website, Postmates, and DoorDas
Meet the Honorees:
CEO of Zoom Video Communications
Eric S. Yuan founded Zoom in 2011. Prior to starting Zoom, Eric was Corporate Vice President of Engineering at Cisco, where he was responsible for Cisco's collaboration software development. As one of the founding engineers and Vice President of Engineering at WebEx, Eric was the heart and soul of the WebEx product from 1997 to 2011. Eric proudly grew the WebEx team from 10 engineers to more than 800 worldwide, and contributed to revenue growth from $0 to more than $800M. Eric is a named inventor on 11 issued and 20 pending patents in real time collaboration. In 2017, Eric was added to the Business Insider list of the 52 Most Powerful People in Enterprise Tech. Eric is a graduate of the Stanford University Executive Program. Eric holds a bachelor of science in applied mathematics from Shandong University of Science and Technology, China.
Contemporary Artist - Yang Yongliang Studio
Born in 1980 in Shanghai, Yang Yongliang graduated from Shanghai Institute of Design of China Academy of Art in 1999, majoring in visual communication and design. He now works and lives in Shanghai. He started his experiments with contemporary art in 2005, and his practice involved varied media including photography, painting, video and installation. He is best known for the contemporary ink landscape he created by integrating numerous urban and natural images together. Poetic and quaint as it appears to be when seen from a distance, it unfolds itself as a fable of the development of modern civilization if one takes a closer look. A sense of psychological turmoil and uneasiness that is characteristic of the modern era can be perceived from the abandoned power tower, the man-made paradise and the vast but internally empty cities. He started to learn traditional Chinese art and culture since childhood, the influence of which is seen in the form of his art: a sense of traditional aesthetics can be clearly perceived. In terms of media and content, however, it is brimming with a strong sense of post-modernism. Déjà vu, the large installation to be presented this time, is a brand new attempt by the artist. A somewhat surrealistic approach is adopted to turn back time and bring viewers into their childhood memories. Past memory is relived like a dream. Yang’s work has been exhibited at Moscow Biennale, the Metropolitan Museum of Art and Ullens Center for Contemporary Art among others and is collected by public institutes such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the British Museum, National Gallery of Victoria as well as by private collectors such as Uli Sigg.
Inventor of Manovue
Asia 21 Young Leader, Class of 2018
Roopam Sharma,FRSA also known mononymously as Roopam, is a cognitive scientist and inventor creating social impact through disruptive technological inventions that solve perennial problems. Named among the top 100 most influential global thinkers in the world by Foreign Policy Magazine in 2019, Roopam is the inventor of Manovue: the world's first intelligent wearable visual assistant. Manovue employs artificial intelligence and the internet in the form of an inexpensive wearable glove and earpiece, allowing the visually impaired to read printed text, eliminating the need for braille language.
In 2019, Roopam was a millennial getting noticed - Entrepreneur Magazine named him in their “35 Under 35” list and Forbes Asia selected him for their annual “30 Under 30” list. Roopam was inducted into the 2018 Asia Society’s Class of Asia 21 Young Leaders. This same year, Roopam was bestowed upon with the prestigious National Youth Award, the highest honor in India presented annually by the President of India for his contribution to the field of national development and social service through research and innovation.
In 2016, the then 20 year old Roopam was the youngest person ever to be recognized as an innovator under 35 by the MIT Technology Review and in 2016 he was awarded the Gifted Citizen Prize, an international prize that honors the social entrepreneur with the best ability to positively impact ten million people over the next six years. Roopam is a first generation college student holding a Bachelor's of Technology Degree in Computer Science and Engineering from Manav Rachna University wherein he now serves as an Advisory Board Member. He also chairs the board of VR | AR | MR, India's first and now the largest VR/AR community with a mission is to democratize VR/AR technologies, having impacted more than 100000 lives free of cost since it's inception in 2017.
Roopam sits on the jury of the Living Talent's Masterpiece and Accenture's Innovation Challenge. Roopam believes that people with passion can change the world for the better and is always inspiring others to bring a positive change and think differently.
CEO and Co-Founder of Enplug
Asia 21 Young Leader, Class of 2016
Nanxi Liu is the CEO and Co-Founder of Enplug. She was named Forbes 30 Under 30. Enplug is a leading digital display software company used to manage and distribute visual communication on screens in Fortune 500 companies, banks, hotels, elevators, and universities. The company is headquartered in Los Angeles and has offices in Japan, Brazil, Poland, Australia, and the UK.
While an undergrad at UC Berkeley, Nanxi co-founded Nanoly Bioscience, a venture-backed biotech company that develops polymers to eliminate refrigeration for vaccines and therapeutics. The company received the Top Research Award at the World Biomaterials Congress and Intel’s Top Social Innovation Award. In addition, Nanxi serves on the Board of Advisors for Covington Capital, which manages $3 billion, and as a Partner at XFactor Ventures, where she invests in women-founded startups.
Passionate about community service, Nanxi serves on the Board of Directors for the National Foster Youth Institute and the Los Angeles Police Foundation. She was appointed as 1 of 5 voting members to the New Motor Vehicle Board of the California Department of Motor Vehicles. In 2018, Nanxi received UC Berkeley's Sather Gate Young Volunteer of the Year Award for her role in helping raise $22 million for the university.
As a producer of the Amazon TV series, The Bay, Nanxi received an Emmy Award. Nanxi is a concert pianist and has performed live on NBC and ABC. Nanxi double majored in business administration and political economy at UC Berkeley.
Meet the Presenters:
Lieutenant Governor of California
Ambassador Eleni Kounalakis was sworn in as the 50th Lieutenant Governor of California by Governor Gavin Newsom on January 7th, 2019. She is the first woman elected Lt. Governor of California. A native Californian, she visited each of the state’s 58 counties during her historic campaign.
From 2010 to 2013, Kounalakis served as President Barack Obama’s Ambassador to the Republic of Hungary. Kounalakis was the first Greek-American woman – and at age 43 one of America’s youngest – to serve as U.S. Ambassador. Her highly acclaimed memoir, “Madam Ambassador, Three Years of Diplomacy, Dinner Parties and Democracy in Budapest” (The New Press, 2015), chronicles the onset of Hungary’s democratic backsliding.
Governor Jerry Brown appointed Kounalakis to chair the California Advisory Council for International Trade and Investment in 2014. Kounalakis was a Virtual Fellow at the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR) between 2014 and 2017, specializing in international trade and immigration. She is currently a director of the Association of American Ambassadors and a National Democratic Institute (NDI) “Ambassadors Circle” advisor.
Founding Chairman of Treasure Data
Bill Tai has been funding companies as a Venture Capitalist since 1991 and has had 22 companies he backed at the early stage grow to become listed companies. He is Founding Chairman of Treasure Data (acquired by ARM / Softbank), Founding Chairman of IPInfusion (Tokyo:48130) and is a lead seed investor in Canva, Wish, and Zoom Video where he was 1st to commit as a backer. He was founding CEO of Internet Data Center company iAsiaWorks (IPO via Goldman Sachs & Morgan Stanley) and Founder of Tradebeam a leader in SaaS based Global Trade Management.
After earning a BSEE with Honors from University of Illinois, he joined LSI Logic, a startup formed by the CEO of Fairchild Semiconductor. He then earned an MBA at Harvard Business School, He established the semiconductor practice for Alex.Brown & Sons, driving IPOs of Atmel, Adaptec, Cirrus Logic, Dallas Semi, Exar, and Zilog before becoming a venture capitalist. He was granted a PhD from Curtin University where he is an Adjunct Professor focused on "Innovation and Economic Development" and Chairman of ACTAI Global - a 501(c)3 uniting Athletes, Conservationists, Technologists, Artists & Innovators supporting 'active conservation' of our environment as partners to 2030Vision, Ocean Elders and Mission Blue, and economic empowerment via entrepreneurship through projects such as the Extreme Tech Challenge.
CEO of Evite
Since joining Evite as CEO in June 2014, Victor Cho has redirected the popular brand into a customer-obsessed company focused on bringing people together face-to-face. He has achieved revenue growth and taken the company into exciting new ventures, including text message invitations, donations for nonprofits and, most recently, Evite Pro—an event management subscription designed with professionals in mind. Prior to joining Evite, Cho was most recently the CEO driver of a holistic and multiyear turnaround effort at Kodak Gallery (formerly ofoto.com). Before that, he served as the vice president and leader of Intuit’s web channel, taking the business from $300 million to $1.3 billion+ by fundamentally changing the company’s web strategy, organizational structures, processes and technology platforms. Cho also spent seven years at Microsoft, where he launched the company's earliest internet marketing and software-as-a-service initiatives. Cho earned a BS from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School.
Executive Director of the Contemporary Jewish Museum
Lori Starr joined The Contemporary Jewish Museum as Executive Director in June 2013. In her decades as a leader in the arts, Starr has been recognized for her commitment to engaging diverse audiences with innovative exhibitions and interdisciplinary public programming. Prior to her appointment, she was Executive Director of the Koffler Centre of the Arts, Canada's only multidisciplinary, contemporary Jewish cultural institution offering cutting edge contemporary art exhibitions, music, dance, film, literary, theater, and other programs. Starr also served as Vice President for Culture for the UJA Federation of Greater Toronto; Senior Vice President and Museum Director of the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles; and Director of Communications and Public Affairs for the J. Paul Getty Trust and J. Paul Getty Museum. Additionally, she has held key management and education positions in the School of Fine Arts, University of Southern California, and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Starr holds an M.A. in Art History from University of Virginia, and a B.A. in Art History from Rutgers University-New Brunswick. She was a Rockefeller Fellow in Museum Education and Community Arts at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.
Co-Founder & Managing Director of Nexus Venture Partners
Naren Co-founded Integrated Systems Inc (ISI), a leading embedded software company, where he served as the President/CEO for fifteen years since founding in 1980. He took ISI public and subsequently merged it with Wind River Systems. Naren continued to serve on the board of Wind River till its acquisition by Intel. He has served on the boards of many public and privately held companies. He is currently the Chairman of the Board of Red Hat, Inc. He also serves on the Board of Trustees of the California Institute of Technology and the Advisory Board of Asia Society Northern California. Naren has over 20 years of early and early-growth stage investment experience in the U.S. and India.
Naren holds a B.Tech degree from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Delhi; an MS from the California Institute of Technology and a Ph.D. from Stanford University all in engineering. He received the Presidents’ Gold Medal for the top performance at IIT Delhi. Naren has received distinguished alumni awards from Caltech and IIT and was elected a Fellow of the IEEE. He is an active advisor to entrepreneurs worldwide.
Asia Society Trustee and Asia 21 Young Leader
Founder, investor and leading advisor on China’s dynamic technology and consumer sectors, Duncan Clarkis a recognized expert on the Internet and entrepreneurship in China. He has lived and worked in Beijing and Shanghai for more than 25 years. Published in 2016 in English by HarperCollins, his book ‘Alibaba –The House that Jack Ma Built’ was named a Book of the Year by The Economist magazine and short-listed for ‘Business Book of the Year’ by the Financial Times/McKinsey. The book has been translated into thirty languages and has recently been optioned for development into a motion picture.
Duncan is chairman of BDA China, a company he founded in 1994 after working as an investment banker with Morgan Stanley in London and Hong Kong. With a team of over 120 professionals in Beijing, BDA advises investors in high growth companies in China and other Asian markets. A senior China policy advisor to institutional investors, corporations and governments, Duncan is also a co-founder or early stage investor of a number of technology ventures including AppAnnie and Radish Fiction. He is an independent director of Bangkok Bank (China) in Shanghai, a member of the Board of Trustees of the Asia Society in New Yorkand a member of the advisory board of the Pictet Digital thematic mutual fund, managed by Pictet Asset Management in Geneva.
Duncan also serves on the international board of WildAid, the San Francisco non-profit whose mission is to end the trade of illegal wildlife products in our lifetime.Duncan is a Visiting Senior Fellow of the Institute of Global Affairs at the London School of Economics; and a former Visiting Scholar at Stanford University. He previously served as Chairman of the British Chamber of Commerce in China, and was awarded an OBE in 2013 for services to UK-China trade and investment. A UK citizen raised in the UK, US and France, Duncan is a graduate of the London School of Economics.
Ambassador Josette Sheeran
President and CEO, Asia Society
Josette Sheeran is the seventh President and CEO of Asia Society. She is responsible for advancing the organization’s global work in the fields of arts and culture, policy and business, and education.
Ms. Sheeran also serves as the UN Special Envoy to Haiti, representing the UN Secretary-General in advancing Haiti's 2030 vision and in helping secure an end to the transmission of cholera in Haiti.
Sheeran is former vice chair of the World Economic Forum, known for its annual Davos convening and Davos in China. She helped advance global initiatives encompassing global, regional, and industry agendas such as Grow Africa, which has attracted $10 billion to end hunger and malnutrition in Africa.
Prior to the World Economic Forum, Sheeran was executive director of the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), appointed by UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan in 2006. Sheeran’s TED Talk on ending world hunger has been viewed more than one million times and has been used in schools to teach children about hunger. She led the world’s largest humanitarian organization, serving up to 100 million of the world's most hungry each year. Under Sheeran’s leadership, the WFP increased its donor base to more than 100 nations and became the first UN program to include the so-called BRIC countries and the Gulf States among its top 10 donors.
Asia Society Northern California Chair
Ken Wilcox currently serves as Chairman of Asia Society Northern California. Ken was previously the CEO of SVB Financial Group. In that role, clinic he successfully pursued a strategy of expansion and diversification, cialis while remaining focused on the group’s core niches of technology, life sciences, venture capital and premium wineries. He is a member of the Board of the Asia Society of Northern California, the Asian Art Museum, the Equilibrium Capital Group, and Columbia Lake Venture Debt Fund. He is also an adjunct professor and member of International Advisory Board at Fudan University in Shanghai, and an advisor to a number of startups. Earlier in his career, Mr. Wilcox was a member of the board of directors of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco from 2006 to 2012.
In 2008, Ken was named “Banker of the Year” by American Banker. He earned the distinction of “Entrepreneur of the Year” by Ernst & Young in 2009 and in 2010.The Yangpu District of Shanghai has also honored Mr. Wilcox with an “Innovation Contributor Award”. In 2013, the Shanghai Municipal Government presented Mr. Wilcox with the “Magnolia Silver Award”, a municipal honor given to expatriates for their outstanding contribution to the city’s economic, social or cultural development. Ken earned a master’s degree in business administration from Harvard Business School, as well as a PhD in German studies Ohio State University.
Executive Director of Asia Society Northern California
Margaret Conley, a Bay Area native, is the Executive Director of Asia Society Northern California. Her non-profit experience includes the Los Angeles World Affairs Council, where she developed and launched an inaugural Future of Asia conference, and the Berggruen Institute, where she helped build a new Philosophy + Culture Institute with a focus on the US and China. 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. Her interviews include Howard Schultz, Richard Branson, Ban Ki-Moon, LeBron James and Beyoncé. She earned 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.
Dr. Yvonne (Bonnie) Maldonado
Professor of Pediatrics, Stanford University School of Medicine
Yvonne (Bonnie) A. Maldonado, MD, is a professor in the Departments of Pediatrics and Health Research and Policy, chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases, and senior associate dean for Faculty Development and Diversity at Stanford University School of Medicine. Her research activities have included the epidemiology and prevention of viral infections such as rotavirus, measles, mumps, rubella, polio and pediatric HIV infection. Her research is conducted internationally in Zimbabwe and Mexico, as well as in the United States. She has written over 100 articles in peer-reviewed journals, and 40 book chapters on these topics. In 1989, Dr. Maldonado received the Epidemic Intelligence Service Alumni Award from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and she was inducted into the Multicultural Alumni Hall of Fame at Stanford University in 2001. She is a Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics, a member of the Society for Pediatric Research, the Pediatric Infectious Disease Society and the American Public Health Association. Dr. Maldonado has devoted substantial effort to teaching and training activities at Stanford University as well as in the national and international setting. Throughout her career, she has invested heavily in her commitment to improving cultural and gender diversity at all levels.
Dr. Yongwei Zhang
Group VP of BGI-Shenzhen
Yongwei Zhang, Ph.D., serves as Group VP of BGI-Shenzhen, one of the world’s largest genomics service companies. He is also Chief Operating Officer of Complete Genomics (San Jose, CA), a wholly-owned subsidiary of BGI. Dr. Zhang has over 20 years of experience in optics-based instruments and systems. He began his career in Quinta Technologies developing optically-assisted computer hard drives. Quinta was later acquired by Seagate. He was a Co-Founder of telecom component startup company iolon, Inc, which has raised ~$100million VC funding. He joined biotech startup Guava Technologies in 2005, where he held positions with increasing responsibilities. Guava was later acquired by Millipore, subsequently by Merck KGaA. As Head of New Product Introduction at Merck Life Science division, he helped to develop and manufacture several generations of Guava flowcytometry instruments and reagent kits, including the award-winning Muse Cell Analyzer. In 2013, he joined Complete Genomics as Sr. Director of Engineering, responsible for the development of NGS sequencing platform BGISEQ series. Dr. Zhang is also a strong advocate for STEM education. He served as a Board Member of US nationally top-ranked Saratoga School Union District. Dr. Zhang received his B. Eng in Precision Instruments and B.Sc. in Applied Mathematics from Tsinghua University in Beijing, M.S. in Computer Sciences, M.S. and Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from The Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, MD.
Based in San Francisco, Greg Quiroga is a fundraising auctioneer who works with non-profit organizations all over the country.
He works with over 50 non-profits, schools, foundations, arts organizations and charities to help raise over $10 million a year. His performances are always a fiery combination of passion, humor and heartfelt engagement. Greg’s favorite part of every auction is that moment when the crowd comes together to help change the world through the fund-a-need.
He also enjoys “encouraging bidders to spend more than they should on things they don’t need in support of a great cause,” and always manages to make people feel good about doing exactly that.
Greg and his wife live in San Francisco with their son, Ryder, who sold his first auction lot when he was just four.