Speaker Bios

Ani Avanessian |  Director of Human Resources, Panda Restaurant Group, Inc.

Ani Avanessian is a Director of Human Resources at Panda Restaurant Group, Inc. (PRG) the leading and fastest growing chain of Asian dining experiences in the world that includes Panda Inn, Panda Express and Hibachi San. Ani leads the Support Center HR functions inclusive of recruitment, associate relations, training and organizational development.

Ani is committed to fulfilling PRG's Mission, which is to "Deliver exceptional Asian dining experiences by building an organization where people are inspired to better their lives." To realize this Mission, Panda's 2020 Vision was established with the charge to "Be recognized as the World Leader in People Development to become loved by our Guests." This Vision has elevated the commitment of every Panda associate to take personal responsibility to shape Panda's culture by creating a safe and empowering conversational environment for Team Panda to listen, appreciate and challenge each other in bringing our 2020 Vision alive and in action.

Ani has over 20 years experience in various HR leadership roles in diverse industries including financial services, technology, and restaurants. She has a Bachelors degree from UCLA in Psychology and a Masters of Science, in Human Resource Design from Claremont Graduate University. Ani is also a member of SHRM, Society for Human Resource Management.

Alan Chen | President & CEO, Perfect World Entertainment, Inc.

Dr. Alan Chen has been with Perfect World since 2008, assuming the role of SVP of the company and CEO of Perfect World Entertainment Inc., the company's American and European subsidiary. Prior to joining Perfect World, Dr. Chen had held a number of executive positions in the industries of computer gaming, IT, and telecommunications, and accumulated valuable experience in product marketing, operations, and professional services. From 2006 to 2007, Dr. Chen was the CTO of The9 Ltd. Prior to that, Mr. Chen had assumed roles including EVP of Hewlett-Packard China, responsible for the Enterprise Server and Storage business; VP of Professional Services of Lucent Technologies China; and GM of Carrier Packet Solutions at Nortel Networks. Mr. Chen received both his B.Eng and M.Eng. degrees from the Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications, and his Ph.D. degree in electrical engineering from University of Ottawa, Canada.

Alan Chu | Partner, China Business Network Leader, PwC

Alan Chu leads the China Business Network (CBN) for PwC US. CBN is a dedicated team of bilingual US-China specialists who provide enhanced, integrated and on-the-ground support for US and Chinese companies engaged in cross-border business and investment.

Alan advises on China-related business issues and coordinates specialist support for PwC US and PwC China clients across various industries in the US and China. He has more than 22 years of experience working with Fortune 1000 as well as middle-market companies on inbound and outbound investments in the US and China.

Alan is bicultural and fluent in Mandarin and English, and has spent over 20 years in Asia, including 10 years living and working in China. During that time, Alan led numerous business process improvement/internal control consulting and internal audit projects for a number of Chinese enterprises as well as multinationals across China. Alan also worked for over two years as a financial controller with a major multinational consumer products joint venture in China, with oversight of operational areas including credit management, procurement, sales and marketing strategy in addition to accounting/taxation and other finance-related duties.

Alan is a US Certified Public Accountant, Certified Fraud Examiner, Certified Internal Auditor, and Certified Information Systems Auditor.

Congresswoman Judy Chu

Congresswoman Chu began her career as an educator and taught psychology at Los Angeles City College and East Los Angeles College for 20 years. She was first elected to the Garvey School District Board of Education in 1985.

She was then elected to the Monterey Park City Council, where she served as Mayor 3 times. From there, she was elected to the California State Assembly, where she was Chair of the powerful Appropriations Committee, which has control over all legislation with a fiscal impact to the state. While in the Assembly, she introduced and helped pass the most successful tax amnesty bill in the nation, which was estimated to bring in $300 million but actually brought in $4.8 billion in revenue for the state budget without raising taxes. She was then elected to the State Board of Equalization, California's tax board.

Rep. Chu earned her B.A. in mathematics from UCLA and her Ph.D. in psychology from the California School of Professional Psychology.

John Gann | Finance Director, Trina Solar (U.S.) Inc

John Gann is Finance Director and member of the Americas Region Management Committee for Trina Solar (U.S.) Inc. Trina Solar, traded on the NYSE, was founded in 1997 as a system installation company. It is a multinational company with a presence in fifteen countries. It established its U.S. headquarters in San Jose, CA in 2009. In 2011, the company had revenues of US$2.05 billion dollars. Trina Solar is one of the few PV manufacturers that has developed a vertically integrated business model from the production of monocrystalline and multicrystalline silicon ingots, wafers and cells to the assembly of high quality modules. The company has been ranked #1 by New Economy for the best APAC Renewable Energy Company. John Gann is  responsible for managing Trina Solar's Americas business. With more than 20 years of work and management experience with multiple Fortune 500 companies in the U.S. Since joining Trina Solar U.S. in May 2010, John has worked with teammates to build Trina's business from zero sales in 2009 to today's 18% market share in the U.S. PV market. During this time, Trina has shipped over 820MW or $800M solar modules to U.S. customers in the residential, commercial and utility market segments.

Tom Georgis | Senior Vice President of Development, SolarReserve

Tom Georgis is Senior Vice President of Development at SolarReserve where he leads the company's efforts to develop large-scale solar thermal and photovoltaic energy projects in the Americas and Asia. He manages SolarReserve' project development portfolio of over 3000 MWs in the United States and is leading the company's expansion into China, Australia, and Latin America.

Georgis has over 20 years of development and operational experience in the energy, technology, and government service sectors, holding several senior management positions, with expertise in the areas of structuring transactions for energy and infrastructure projects, negotiating with lenders and advising investors in all aspects of energy project acquisition and project development including: storage and transportation capacity sales, gas and alternative fuel power generation, natural gas pipeline arrangements and power purchase agreements.

Prior to joining SolarReserve, he was a Managing Director of International at GlobalTec Solutions, a privately held technology company where he was responsible for all aspects of the company's international expansion. Georgis was a Principal and Managing Director at Exodus Energy LLC, a Houston-based privately held power and natural gas firm. While at Exodus, he focused on the development and acquisition of energy assets, acting as lead developer on several multi-million dollar innovative technology energy facilities, including natural gas storage, offshore LNG regasification and petroleum coke gasification. Prior to Exodus, he was a manager at Enron Corporation, where he was responsible for developing and structuring energy asset projects internationally, negotiating and closing over 500 MW of power generation agreements.

Georgis also served nine years as a Naval Special Warfare Officer in the United States Navy. He graduated from Northwestern University with a Bachelors of Arts degree in International Studies and obtained a Masters of Business Administration degree from the Anderson School at the University of California Los Angeles.

Julian Gresser | Co-Chairman, Global Innovation Integrators (GII)

Julian Gresser is an international attorney, professional negotiator, inventor, and recognized expert on Japan. As a negotiator his most dramatic success involved helping a San Francisco-based trading company transform its $8 million after-tax branch into a $1 billion Japanese company in seven years. (This transaction originated by Julian Gresser and his colleague, Professor James E. Schrager has come to be called "Going Public Japanese Style" adopting the title of an article they jointly authored in the Wall Street Journal.) From 1976-1983 he was twice Visiting Mitsubishi Professor at the Harvard Law School and also taught courses as a Visiting Professor at MIT on the legal issues of strategic industries. He has been a Visiting Professor at Beijing University, where he taught seminars on Japanese and U.S. environmental law, and also helped the Chinese environmental authorities draft China's Marine Pollution Control Law.

He has served as legal advisor to numerous U.S., Japanese, and European companies on a wide array of business issues, including joint ventures, limited (venture capital) partnerships, technology licensing, export controls and customs fraud, antitrust, and intellectual property protection, particularly patent infringement disputes. He has been a senior consultant to the U.S. State Department, The World Bank, The Prime Minister's Office of Japan, The People's Republic of China, and the European Commission (where he trained the Commission's Japanese negotiating teams).

Julian Gresser is the author of four books, Environmental Law in Japan (MIT Press, 1981), Partners in Prosperity: Strategic Industries for the U.S. and Japan (McGraw Hill, 1984; in Japanese, Cho Hanei Sengen), and Piloting Through Chaos: Wise Leadership/Effective Negotiation for the 21st Century ( Five Rings Press, 1996), (in Japanese, Ishi Kettei Isutsu no Hosoku--Koshodo no Gokui, Tokuma Shoten Publishing Company, Tokyo, 1997), in addition to numerous articles in English and Japanese on technology, economics and law. His most recent work is: Piloting Through Chaos-The Explorer's Mind (English publication: February2013, Bridge 21; Chinese publication, summer/fall 2013) His most recent article is Expanding Your IP Pie in China-Winning Strategies for Agile Foreign Companies (Bloomberg, May 2011, forthcoming in Chinese and Japanese).

Global Innovation Integrators (http://gii.us.com/) - GII's mission is to assist rapidly growing middle market companies in becoming Global Innovation Champions. Working in close cooperation with the investment bank, Hunter Wise (http://www.hunterwise.com/), the GII/HW Team serves its clients as an Innovation Delta Force, generating an "innovation premium" by bringing value to every aspect of the company, and preparing the company for presentation to the international financial community. Once cornerstone financing is secured, GII/HW prepares the company for an IPO on one of the major international exchanges, following the Going Public Japanese (and Chinese Style program) he has innovated. GII/HW's initial focus has been on assisting successful Chinese and Japanese companies in expanding their operations internationally.

International Knowledge Trust--Julian Gresser has been active for many years in assisting companies in accelerating the commercial implementation of breakthrough discoveries, inventions, and innovations in clean technology and green energy. For this purpose he has established an International Knowledge Trust (IKT) of leading scientists, inventors, entrepreneurs, financiers, attorneys, and senior government officials. Julian Gresser is also a recognized expert in the emerging field of collaborative innovation. 

Carla Hayn | Senior Associate Dean for the Professional MBA Programs; Professor of Accounting, UCLA Anderson

Dr. Carla Hayn is a professor in Accounting at UCLA Anderson School of Management and the senior associate dean of the Executive MBA and Fully Employed MBA Programs. She holds a Ph.D. in accounting and finance from the University of Michigan.

Professor Hayn's research is in the areas of financial reporting and disclosures, effect of accounting numbers on stock prices, the economic consequences of taxes and tax reporting, mergers and acquisitions, as well as the information content of accounting information such as line-of-business reporting, special items and tax disclosures. Dr. Hayn has published numerous articles in leading accounting and finance journals. She has served as a financial consultant and an expert witness in securities litigation cases, focusing on financial reporting and disclosure issues, corporate valuation and risk assessment. Prior to her academic career, Dr. Hayn held the position of Chief Financial Analyst for the State of Florida Legislature and served as a commercial loan officer in a commercial bank.

Dr. Hayn teaches courses in financial accounting and financial statement analysis. She received a number of teaching awards, most recently the Outstanding Teaching Award in the UCLA-NUS Program in 2006. In the UCLA Executive Education series, Dr. Hayn is the co-coordinator (with Professor Al Osborne) of the Directors' Training and Certification Program. Prior to joining UCLA, she was a faculty member of the Merage School of Business at the University of California-Irvine and the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University, where she held the Coopers & Lybrand fellowship in Mergers & Acquisitions.

Heidi Hui | Senior Manager, Talent Management, HTC America

Heidi Hui is a Senior Human Resources Leader with HTC, a Taiwan based Global Corporation.  She was brought on to create and build the Human Resources team and systems to support a high growth mobile phone industry. Heidi is responsible for attracting top talents from the industry to the HTC Brand name in new emerging markets.  In addition, she has created a communication plan to maximize the awards program in the Americas region and streamlined internal infrastructure to become more efficient. Heidi has 20 years of experience including leadership of all Human Resources areas with an emphasis on organization and manpower planning.

Her professional experience covers the banking, high tech electronics, telecommunication and video gaming industries. Heidi was interviewed and quoted by the Wall Street Journal  for an article on the challenges companies face on H1B Visas. She accepts challenges of attracting and retaining top talents for the growing and changing dynamics in a wide variety of industries.

Mark S. Karlan | Lecturer of Finance and Real Estate, UCLA Anderson and Former President, Strategic Partners Asia, CBRE Global Investors

Mark S. Karlan has 28 years of experience in the commercial real estate investment business. Mr. Karlan was an Executive Managing Director of CBRE Global Investors from 2006 through 2011 where he was a member of the firm's global Executive Committee and various Investment Committees. He was the President and founder of the firm's Strategic Partners Asia fund, a value-added real estate fund with $1.2 billion of AUM that was one of the top performing funds of its vintage, and he led the fund's dedicated investment team with offices in Hong Kong, Shanghai, Beijing, Tokyo and Singapore.

Previously, Mr. Karlan was the President, CEO, founder and a member of the board of directors of Imperial Credit Commercial Mortgage Investment Corp., a publicly traded REIT that invested in both commercial real estate and commercial property loans in the U.S. and Europe. Imperial Credit Commercial was the top performing mortgage REIT from the time of its 1997 initial public offering that raised more than $500 million of equity through the date of its sale to another public company in 2000. Mr. Karlan began his career at JMB Realty Corp. in Chicago in 1985 where he was a Senior Vice President and partner and led the acquisition of the Cadillac Fairview Company, one of the largest real estate firms in North America. Mr. Karlan has acquired more than 100 commercial properties and portfolios of commercial mortgages globally with a gross asset value exceeding $9 billion on behalf of institutional and other investors. Mr. Karlan earned MBA, Juris Doctor and Bachelor of Arts degrees from Harvard University with honors, received a John Harvard Scholarship for academic achievement of the highest distinction and was a winner of the Williston contract negotiation competition. He is a member of the California State Bar and is a California licensed real estate broker. Mr. Karlan previously taught Real Estate Finance and Advanced Real Estate Finance at UCLA Extension, is a featured speaker at institutional and private equity conferences, and was a keynote speaker at the 2012 Wilbur Woo Greater China Business Conference at UCLA.

Deborah Lee | Partner, Tax, PwC

Deborah Lee is a respected partner leading the Chinese tax practice in the Los Angeles office of PwC. Her clients count on her vision to navigate the complexities of multinational business in both China and the US. Her more than 20 years experience gives her the depth of experience her clients trust to deliver U.S. domestic and international income tax services to corporations, partnerships and individuals.

Deborah specializes in cross-border investment consultation, international tax and structuring planning for Chinese Corporations' investment in the United States as well as U.S. Corporations' investment in China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Singapore. Deborah advises her clients on strategy and tax planning on the cross-border transactions including mergers and acquisitions, US and China joint ventures, transfer of intangible property ownership, transfer pricing, US real estate investment, and international estate and gift tax. She assists her clients in negotiating with the tax authority on income tax audit, appeal, advance pricing agreement and ruling request in the US.

Deborah received her Bachelor of Laws from National Taiwan University and Master of Professional Accounting from University of Texas at Arlington. She is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and a Board of Directors of Sino-American Certified Public Accountant Association.

Deborah serves on the Women Leaders Committee of United Way, Los Angeles Chapter. She is the Executive Vice President of Ascend, Los Angeles Chapter, a national non-profit organization that is dedicated to the advancement of Pan-Asians in management and leadership via mentorship. Deborah is admired for not only how she leads her high growth business but for her work in the community in creating pathways out of poverty for those that she serves.

Phillip Leslie | Associate Professor of Strategy, UCLA Anderson

Phillip is a business economist with expertise in strategic management, the applied econometrics of data analytics, demand pricing and information disclosure. His work on pricing has examined how firms can implement practical strategies for consumer-specific pricing. Much of this work has been in the context of event ticketing, making Phillip a leading expert on ticket pricing.

Phillip has also written a series of papers on information disclosure as a policy tool. For example, in one study he shows that restaurant hygiene grade cards caused a 20% decrease in the number of people admitted to hospital with food-related illnesses. Another study shows that consumers at Starbucks reduced calorie purchases by 6% due to calorie posting on the menus.

In other research, Phillip has written about managerial incentives in private equity, consumer boycotts, inspection design and the behavior of inspectors, and the returns to education. His research is published in the American Economic Journal, American Economic Review, Journal of Labor Economics, Quantitative Marketing and Economics, Quarterly Journal of Economics and the RAND Journal of Economics.

Phillip is a Research Associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research. At Anderson he teaches strategic management and he is an experienced executive education teacher. He received his PhD, M. Phil and M.A. in Economics from Yale University and his M. Comm. and B. Comm. Economics from the University of Melbourne.

Helen Liu | Deputy Branch Manager, Wing Lung Bank (China Merchants Bank)

Helen Liu is Deputy Branch Manager at Wing Lung Bank Los Angeles Branch, a wholly owned subsidiary of China Merchants Bank. China Merchants Bank is the sixth largest bank of the country. Ms. Liu oversees risk management and credit administration at the Los Angeles Branch.

Ms. Liu is a veteran banker and has served at financial institutions on the West Coast for over 10 years with focus in risk management and credit administration. She joined Wing Lung Bank in 2011 and has led the branch in successfully turning its portfolio from local businesses into a comprehensive mix of local clients with leading Chinese enterprises and Fortune 500 companies.

Ms. Liu is also a licensed attorney in the State of Washington. She received her juris doctor and master of finance degrees from Seattle University in Seattle, Washington.

Curt Moldenhauer | Partner, China Deals Leader, PwC

Curt is a Partner in the Silicon Valley Transaction Services Group, having recently relocated from Shanghai, China to San Jose. Curt has been working in M&A for over fifteen years, and his experience includes leading domestic and international due diligence investigations for buy-side clients, leveraged recapitalization and other financial structuring consultations, strategic investment alternative analyses, consultations on deal modeling, market entry and dealing with other complex financial and accounting issues for multinational clients. 

Curt has significant experience working on cross border projects. In addition to his recent four year tenure in China, during 1995-1998, Curt worked in the PwC Milan Italy office, where he was involved with several privatizations, debt offerings, and joint ventures for large Italian private companies and government agencies. Curt has had significant experience working with technology, consumer and industrial  products companies over his career, having worked with both financial and strategic buyers. Curt graduated from Tufts University in Boston Massachusetts with a Bachelors degree in  Economics and he has his Masters in Business Administration from University of Manchester in the UK. He is a Certified Public Accountant in the United States.

Owen Murray | Partner, Forensic Services, PwC

Mr. Murray is a Partner in the Forensic Services practice of PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP Los Angeles, California. Mr. Murray has a wide variety of international experience and has substantial investigation experience including FCPA, accounting related, corruption and bribery, asset misappropriation and kick-back schemes. He has been with PwC for over 21 years. He regularly provides specialized advisory services to attorneys, boards of directors, audit committees, and senior management in the area of FCPA and other relevant regulatory matters. His area of expertise is forensic accounting and investigations. He has led a variety of international and domestic FCPA investigations, compliance assessments, and FCPA due diligence assignments. He has also designed and helped implement numerous training and compliance programs for entities facing anti- bribery and anti-corruption challenges. Industries included were life sciences, technology, apparel, manufacturing, healthcare, multilevel marketing, professional services, entertainment and financial services.

Mr. Murray is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA).

Jerry Nickelsburg | Adjunct Full Professor and Senior Economist, UCLA Anderson Forecast

Jerry Nickelsburg joined the UCLA Anderson Forecast in 2006 as a Senior Economist. At the Anderson Forecast he plays a key role in the economic modeling and forecasting of the National, and California economies and the Los Angeles, Bay Area and Southern California economies. He has conducted special studies into the future of manufacturing in Los Angeles, the distribution of income, the economic impact of the writer's strike, the aerospace industry, the undocumented construction and manufacturing labor force, the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach and the garment industry, focusing on the development of new data and the application of economic theory and statistical methods to sectoral issues. His current academic research is on organizational and individual learning in manufacturing, and investment in specific skills. He is a regular presenter at Economic Conferences is regularly cited in the national media including the Financial Times, Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and Reuters. 

He received his Ph.D. in economics from the University of Minnesota in 1980 specializing in monetary economics and econometrics. He was formerly a professor of Economics at the University of Southern California and has held executive positions with McDonnell Douglas, Flight Safety International, and Flight Safety Boeing during a fifteen year span in the aviation business. He also held a position with the Federal Reserve Board of Governors developing forecasting tools, and has advised banks, investors and financial institutions.

From 2000 to 2006, he was the Managing Principal of Deep Blue Economics, a consulting firm he founded. He has been the recipient of the Korda Fellowship, USC Outstanding Teacher, India Chamber of Commerce Jubilee Lecturer and is a Fulbright Scholar. He has published over 100 articles on monetary economics, economic forecasts and analysis, labor economics, and industrial organization and he is the author of two books on monetary economics and exchange rates.

Judy D. Olian | Dean, John E. Anderson Chair in Management, UCLA Anderson

Judy D. Olian, Ph.D., is the eighth dean of UCLA Anderson School of Management and is the John E. Anderson Chair in Management. She began her appointment in January 2006 after serving more than five years as dean and professor of management at the Smeal College of Business Administration at Pennsylvania State University.

Under her leadership, UCLA Anderson has hired a record number of faculty from the world's best research institutions, launched new degree and certificate programs, initiated a diverse set of global degree and immersion courses, and developed targeted partnerships with an emphasis on Asia and Latin America. The School's Board of Visitors has expanded, attracting many prominent business leaders who represent diverse functional and global perspectives. The school recently completed a fundraising campaign that raised $118M to support innovative programming and management thought leadership, and to advance UCLA Anderson as one of the leading schools of management in the world. 

Olian served as the 2008 chairman of the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International), the premier business accrediting and management thought leadership organization in the world.

As dean of UCLA Anderson, Olian leads an institution that annually provides management education to almost 2,000 students enrolled in MBA, Executive MBA, Fully-Employed MBA, Masters of Financial Engineering and doctoral programs, and to over 2,000 professional managers through executive education programs. The school has several widely recognized research centers and a global alumni network of more than 37,000 graduates. Prior to her tenure at the Smeal College at Penn State, she served in various faculty and executive roles at the Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland.

Widely published in journals on human resource management, top management team composition, and the business alignment of management systems, Olian wrote a weekly syndicated newspaper column and hosted a monthly television show on current topics in business. She is a sought-after speaker and has consulted for major corporations. She serves on the advisory boards of Beijing University's Guanghua School of Business; the US Studies Centre at the University of Sydney; and Luminous Capital.

Born and raised in Australia, Olian holds a B.S. degree in Psychology from the Hebrew University, Jerusalem, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Industrial Relations from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. 

Jeffrey Qu | Chief Executive Officer, Launch Tech Co. Ltd. USA

Jeffrey Qu is the CEO of the US subsidiary of Launch Tech Co., Ltd. Founded in Shenzhen, China in 1993,  Launch Tech Co., Ltd has 23 offices/subsidiaries and over 2,000 employees worldwide. It is the first professional high-tech Chinese company focused on developing, producing and selling  a full range of automotive testing, diagnosis, cleaning and service solutions for automotive workshops. Launch Tech was listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange in 2002.

Mr. Qu established the Launch Tech US division in 2002, leading overseas sales and marketing efforts as well as operations. After 10 years of development, Launch Tech has become one of the major players in the automotive after-market sector in North America, with a large presence in the diagnostic scanning tools field.

Mr. Qu has extensive experience in managing business both in U.S. and China. Prior to Launch Tech, Mr. Qu worked 10 years in the Foreign Trade Import and Export Corporation of Jilin Province, managing import department. Mr. Qu graduated from Changchun Automotive Industry College majoring in computer science.

Frank Shirtong | Senior Director, Corporate Strategy, Symantec Corporation

Frank focuses on growth acceleration in emerging markets for Symantec. He sees crucial opportunities in the Cloud trend in China for companies with technology leadership, and believes that US companies must capture the innovations in emerging markets in order to stay in the leading positions.

Frank has over eighteen years of experience in the IT industry. He has worked on Symantec's Joint Venture in China, with Huawei from the start in 2006 to the finish in 2012, and was the head of Symantec's JV Management Office. Frank received his B.A. from Nanjing Normal University, and M.A. from the Ohio State University.

 

 

Jia Su | Founder, Chief Executive Officer and President, Peak Sports USA

Jia Su is the founder, CEO and president of Peak Sports USA. Peak Sports is leading Chinese Sports Products Company, listed in Hong Kong Stock Exchange since 2009. Mr. Su operates and oversees international sales and marketing, NBA athletes and NBA team relationships and sponsorships and products creative design and innovation.

Mr. Su has worked for Peak for more than 20 years, both in US and China, he has helped Chongqing and Sichuan region with over 100 retails stores for a successful raise of $100 million in sale per year. In 2010, he opened the Los Angeles office to bring the Peak brand to North America market, since then, two Peak flagship stores opened and North America sales networked is well developed, over 20 NBA athletes' using the Peak products on court and Peak brand become the only Chinese sports brand to have sales and marketing network in North America.

Mr. Su holds a B.A. with honors in history from Nanjing University of China. He is a keynote speaker and frequent guest at China Central Television (CCTV) and many other regional TV stations in China.

Pin Tai | Executive Vice President, General Manager, Cathay Bank Eastern Region

Mr. Pin Tai is the Executive Vice President and General Manager of Cathay Bank's Eastern Regions which cover 15 retail branches and 6 commercial loan teams in New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Illinois and Texas. He is also the Deputy Chief Lending Officer of the bank.  Cathay Bank is a California state-chartered bank founded in 1962. It provides a wide range of financial services such as retail banking, real estate and commercial lending, international trade finance, wealth management, SBA loans, etc.  It currently operates 49 branches in seven states and one in Hong Kong, and a representative office in Shanghai and in Taipei.

Mr. Tai has over 30 years of commercial banking experience in America, Hong Kong and China. Prior to joining Cathay Bank, he worked for Bank of China, USA in New York in charge of commercial lending, correspondent banking and marketing. Before that, he worked for Bank of America in Hong Kong and China responsible for providing international banking services to Chinese state-owned banks and companies, as well as multinational companies doing business in Hong Kong and China.

Mr. Tai graduated from the University of Rochester with a B.S. degree in Chemical Engineering and received his MBA degree from the Northwestern University Kellogg Graduate School of Management. He is a board member of NY Chinatown Partnership Local Development Corp., NY Chinese American Bankers Association and Cathay Bank Foundation.

Willa Wang | Talent Acquisition Director, Lenovo China

Willa  Wang is the Talent Acquisition Director of Lenovo China & Asia Pacific. Lenovo is a Chinese multinational technology company dedicated to developing, manufacturing and marketing the highest-quality PCs in the world. It  is the No. 2 global PC company as well as the fastest growing one within the  top 4. Lenovo is a global Fortune 500 company with  $30B annual business revenue and 29,000 employees, with customers in 160+ countries.

Willa Wang has worked for Lenovo for over 10 years. Prior to assuming her current position, she has served as  Human Resources business partner for Lenovo Greater China sales, Global Compensation and Benefit Manager, and China Branding and Communication Manager. Through growing up with Lenovo for ten years, Willa Wang has gained rich experience in human resources management with a deep understanding  of China's local talent market.

Sean Watson | West Coast Practice Leader, Andersen Steinberg

Sean Watson heads up Andersen Steinberg's West Coast USA practice. He has 13 years of experience in Recruiting and Executive Search, running searches for clients in the Legal IT, Finance and Banking industries.

At Andersen Steinberg he is currently focused on recruitment for Senior Risk, Strategy and IT Executives for clients in Consultancies and Corporations. As part of its global coverage, Andersen Steinberg has been active in China and the wider Asia Pacific region for years and has placed various senior executives in China, Hong Kong and Singapore. Outside of the Greater China region, the firm is also actively working on senior searches across Europe, Saudi Arabia, UAE, South Africa, the US and Canada as well as Latin America.

 


Debra Wong Yang | Partner, Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher

Debra Wong Yang is a partner in Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher's Los Angeles office. She is co-chair of the firm's Crisis Management, Information Security and Data Privacy, and White Collar Defense and Investigations groups and nationally known for her experience handling high-profile corporate crime and compliance matters. She has served as an Independent Monitor of a major orthopedic device manufacturer following an industry-wide government investigation and settlement. She also represents companies and boards in internal investigations, compliance matters and criminal investigations and advises clients on matters relating to FCPA, securities fraud, trade secrets and cyber/data intrusions. Ms. Wong Yang previously served as the United States Attorney for the Central District of California. After her appointment in 2002, Ms. Yang was selected to serve on President George W. Bush's Corporate Fraud Task Force and to chair the Attorney General's Advisory Committees on Cyber/Intellectual Property and Civil Rights. She was appointed by the Attorney General to sit on the Attorney General's Advisory Committee and on the Intellectual Property Task Force. Before being appointed United States Attorney, Ms. Wong Yang was a California state judge. Prior to that, she served as an Assistant United States Attorney handling violent crimes, white collar crimes, arson and computer crimes. Ms. Yang received her J.D. in 1985 from Boston College Law School and served as a law clerk to the Honorable Ronald S.W. Lew in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.

Michael K. Woo | Dean, College of Environmental Design, Cal State Poly University, Pomona

Michael Woo, the son of Wilbur K. Woo, is the Dean of the College of Environmental Design at Cal Poly Pomona, one of the leading schools producing architects, landscape architects, urban planners, and graphic designers working in California. He was the first Asian American and the first trained urban planner elected to the Los Angeles City Council, on which he served eight years as a representative of Hollywood and surrounding neighborhoods.

In his spare time, Michael Woo continues to be active in community affairs. He was, until recently, a long-time member of the Los Angeles City Planning Commission. He chairs the board of directors of two organizations:  Sustainable Economic Enterprises of Los Angeles, the nonprofit organization which runs the Hollywood Farmers Market; and Smart Growth America, the national coalition advocating compact urban development and sustainable transportation alternatives.

Michael Woo also is a trustee of the Lingnan Foundation, a U.S.-based charitable foundation which supports academic innovation and international opportunities at Sun Yat-Sen University (which has incorporated Wilbur Woo's alma mater Lingnan College) in Guangzhou and Lingnan University in Hong Kong.

Yunxiang Yan | Professor of Anthropology; Director Center for Chinese Studies, UCLA

A native of Beijing, Yunxiang Yan was forced to drop out of school at the age of twelve and spent the subsequent twelve years working as a shepherd and farmer in two Chinese villages during the Cultural Revolution period in China. He returned to school in 1978, earning a B.A. in Chinese Literature and a M.A. in Folklore and Mythology from Peking University, and a Ph.D. in Social Anthropology from Harvard University. He has previously taught at the Chinese University of Hong Kong and Johns Hopkins University and is currently Professor of Anthropology at University of California, Los Angeles. Unpacking and understanding the moral experiences of ordinary people in the fast-changing world today constitutes the abiding theme in his anthropological career over the last twenty-plus years, and his research interests include family and kinship, economic anthropology, social change and development, cultural globalization, and the individual-society relationship. He is the author of The Flow of Gifts: Reciprocity and Social Networks in a Chinese Village (Stanford UP, 1996), Private Life under Socialism: Love, Intimacy, and Family Change in a Chinese Village, 1949-1999 (Stanford UP, 2003), and The Individualization of Chinese Society (Berg, 2009) and Guggenheim fellow in 2010-2011.  He is working on a book manuscript about individualization and moral changes in post-Mao China.

William Yu | Economist, UCLA Anderson Forecast

William Yu joined the UCLA Anderson Forecast in 2011 as an economist. At Forecast he focuses on the economic modeling and forecasting of Los Angeles and other regional economies in California. He also conducts research and forecast on Asian emerging economies, especially China, and their impacts on the US economy. His research interests include a wide range of economic and financial issues, such as time series econometrics, stock, bond and commodity price dynamics, public health, human capital, higher education, and economic sustainability. He has published over a dozen research articles in Journal of Forecasting, International Journal of Forecasting, Journal of International Money and Finance, Journal of Health Care Finance, Journal of Education Finance, Economic Affairs, and Global Economic Review, etc. He has also served as a reviewer for various journals, such as Journal of Money, Credit, and Banking, Journal of Banking and Finance, Japan and the World Economy, and Energy Journal, etc. 

He received his bachelor's degree in finance from National Taiwan University in 1995 and was an analyst in Fubon Financial Holding in Taipei from 1997 to 2000. In 2006, he received his Ph.D. degree in economics from the University of Washington where he was also an economics instructor and won two distinguished teaching awards. In 2006, he worked for the Frank Russell Investment Group for Treasury and corporate yields modeling and forecasting. From 2006 to 2011, he served as an assistant and an associate professor of economics at Winona State University where he taught courses including international economics, forecasting methods, intermediate macroeconomics, introductory macroeconomics, money and banking, and Asian economies. He also served on the board of directors for the Minnesota Economic Association from 2007 to 2010.

Robin Zhang | Enterprise Solution Manager, China Unicom Americas Operations Ltd.

Robin Zhang is the Enterprise Solution Manager of China Unicom Americas, the U.S. subsidiary of China Unicom Group. China Unicom is world's third-biggest mobile provider and its global network covers more than 100 countries with direct connections and partnership agreements in place with more than 85 international carriers. Globally, China Unicom has over 300,000 employees, with annual revenues in excess of $33 billion and assets of more than $52 billion. China Unicom is listed on the stock exchanges of New York, Hong Kong, and Shanghai. 

Mr. Zhang has been working with China Unicom for over 10 years. In his current role, Mr. Zhang is responsible for expanding the enterprise solutions business to multinational enterprises, particular in the media and semiconductor industry, such as the Motorola, Ford, CCTV, Phoenix TV, IBM and the Microsoft. Prior to his current role, Mr. Zhang was in charge of carrier relations and the wholesale voice business for China Unicom Americas. In China, Mr. Zhang also had over 10 years of experience in telecoms and other related industries. Mr. Zhang is also a past recipient of the innovation prize from the city of Beijing for his work with Automation Systems.

Mr. Zhang holds bachelor and master degrees in Electronic Engineering from Inner Mongolian University and Shanghai Jiao Tong University, respectively.

Sherman Zhang | President, AVIC International USA

Sherman Zhang is the president of AVIC International USA, the U.S. subsidiary of the Aviation Industry Corp. of China (AVIC). AVIC is China's largest state-owned aviation company, focusing on aviation development and production as well as providing full-scale services in research and development, operations, manufacturing and finance. Globally, AVIC has more than 200 subsidiary companies, 20-plus listed companies and approximately 500,000 employees. In 2012, AVIC ranked 250th among Fortune's Global 500 enterprises.

Mr. Zhang has worked for AVIC for more than 28 years during his career and has extensive experience managing businesses both in U.S. and China. In his current role, Mr. Zhang oversees AVIC's U.S. expansion efforts, which in addition to the aviation sector, includes new energy, real estate, hotels, high-end retail, international trade, logistics and electronics. Prior to his current role in the U.S., Mr. Zhang was in charge of international business cooperation efforts for AVIC, including establishing international joint ventures in China. In 1994, he started the Beijing Tedea-Huntleigh Electronic Co., a leading joint-venture electrical equipment manufacturer that was acquired by Vishay Group in 2002. Previously, Mr. Zhang also led the entry of the T.G.I Friday's restaurant chain into Beijing.

Shi Zhang | Associate Professor of Marketing, UCLA Anderson

Professor Shi Zhang is an expert in consumer behavior and marketing strategy. He has done innovative work in the area of using comparison and feature alignability to form strategies for market entry and marketing communications, and in the area of brand naming and positioning in the international market.

He is a frequent speaker at professional conferences and seminars and author of articles in leading journals of marketing, consumer behavior and applied psychology. Professor Zhang teaches marketing management (strategy and policy, advertising and communications, and global marketing) in the programs of EMBA, FEMBA and MBA as well as doctoral seminars at UCLA Anderson. He also organizes and teaches in the school's executive education programs. He has consulted for international companies such as Royal Ahold, Google, Roche, Wrigley's and China Unicom. Previously, he was on the faculty at Duke University.

Using experimental methods, Professor Zhang studies marketing problems from a psychological, behavioral perspective. These problems include product differentiation, market entry, brand naming, advertising and communication. His theoretical research interests are in the area of how cognitive representations of information influence consumer cognition and decision-making. In particular, he has studied representations of product differentiating features in consumer preference formation. This research develops a framework to address the role of comparison and feature alignability in forming strategies for market entry and marketing communications.

He has also studied representations of linguistic structures and their impact on information processing, comparative cognitions and decision-making. This research provides frameworks for brand naming and international/cross-cultural consumer research, and it suggests how firms can leverage differences between consumers to formulate brand naming and positioning strategies.

He received his PhD in Marketing from Columbia University, his PhD in Linguistics from the University of Arizona, an M.A. in Linguistics from Nankai University, Tianjin, China and his B.A. in English from Heilongjiang University, Harbin, China.

2013 Wilbur K. Woo Greater China Business Conference