Home » Board of Trustees

Board of Trustees

Mr. Kent A. Lucken Managing Director, Citi Private Bank, Boston Click for bio Chairman of the Board of Trustees
Mr. Ben Wu Technology Consultant Click for bio Vice Chairman of the Board of Trustees
Mr. David Craig Lew Vice President, Private Wealth Management, Morgan Stanley Click for bio Trustee and Treasurer
Mr. Tom K. Ara Shareholder, Greenberg Traurig, LLP Click for bio Trustee
Ms. Mary Sue Bissell Executive Director, US-Asia Institute Click for bio Trustee, Vice President and Executive Director
Mr. Javade Chaudhri Partner, Jones Day Law Firm Click for bio Trustee
 Ms. Julie Chon Global Head Public Investment Strategy, Perry Capital Click for bio Trustee
Mr. Chris Fenton President, DMG Entertainment Motion Picture Group; GM, DMG North America Click for bio Trustee
Mr. Norman Lau Kee Kee & Lau Kee PLLC  Click for bio Trustee and Chairman Emeritus
Ms. Lisabeth Sugahara Vice President of Communications, Fairfield, Maxwell, LTD Click for bio Trustee

Trustee Biographies

Kent Lucken

Chairman and Trustee

Mr. Lucken became a Trustee of the US-Asia Institute in 2004 and was elected President of the Institute in 2011. Mr. Lucken is a Managing Director of the Citi Private Bank in Boston, responsible for providing global wealth management services to international entrepreneurs and large privately owned companies. Mr. Lucken also oversees Citi Private Bank’s North American Financial Sponsor practice, which encompasses the firm’s relationships with leading private equity firms and their principals. Prior to joining Citi, Mr. Lucken worked at Robertson Stephens Investment Bank. He also served 14 years as a U.S. Foreign Service Officer, completing diplomatic assignments at the U.S. Embassies in Italy, Russia, Georgia, Bosnia, Croatia and Slovenia. He holds a master's degree from Harvard’s Kennedy School and completed his undergraduate studies at Iowa State University. Mr. Lucken is an Overseer at the Boston Institute of Contemporary Art and serves on boards at Harvard Kennedy School’s Deans Alumni Leadership Council, Iowa State University’s Liberal Arts and Sciences College, and Tufts University’s Institute for Global Leadership. He has represented the U.S. as an international election observer at the national elections in the Republic of Georgia and Kyrgyzstan. Mr. Lucken has spoken on international affairs at Harvard, on National Public Radio and in the New York Times and the Boston Globe.

Benjamin Wu

Vice Chairman

Ben Wu is Vice Chairman of the US-Asia Institute, a position he has held since January 2011. He concurrently serves as the Assistant Secretary of Business and Economic Development and Senior Advisor for Technology Policy for the State of Maryland. His primary responsibilities include advancing technology-led economic growth within Maryland's High Technology Corridor focusing on the development of life sciences and emerging technologies. He came to Maryland during former Governor Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr.'s Administration and was asked to remain in the Administration of current Governor Martin O'Malley. Ben serves as the highest-ranking Asian American Administration official in the State of Maryland. Previously, Ben was nominated by President George W. Bush to serve in the first and second terms of his Administration. He served as the U.S. Deputy Under Secretary of Commerce for Technology and as the U.S. Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Technology Policy. Prior to joining the Bush Administration, Ben held senior staff positions in the U.S. Congress for 13 years on the House Science Committee's subcommittee with jurisdiction over the nation's technology and competitiveness policy, as well as Counsel to Congresswoman Constance A. Morella of Maryland. Ben received his Bachelor of Arts degree with majors in both Politics and Metropolitan Studies from New York University, and his Juris Doctor from the University of Pittsburgh.

David Lew

Trustee & Treasurer

Mr. David C. Lew is a Trustee with the US-Asia Institute. Mr. Lew is a vice president in the private wealth management division of Morgan Stanley, responsible for advising large international families and small institutions on their investment portfolios. Prior to joining Morgan Stanley in 2002, Mr. Lew was a senior investment advisor at Barclays Bank. He worked at Citibank from 1985-1999. Mr. Lew holds an MBA in finance from Fordham University and a B.A. from New York University.


Tom K. Ara


Tom K. Ara focuses his practice on entertainment and media industry transactions. He represents an array of banks, private equity groups, hedge funds, investors and borrowers in an assortment of financing and strategic industry transactions. In addition, he advises feature film studios, television networks, production companies, Internet and mobile-based content producers and distributors in corporate transactions as well as in the development, production and distribution of motion picture, television and new media content. Tom has led multiple large financing and M&A transactions that have involved some of the largest motion picture and television companies and franchises, including slate financing vehicles valued in the hundreds of millions of dollars, corporate credit facilities, restructuring transactions involving the ownership of television properties, and the acquisition and sale of several motion picture and television libraries. He has also led debt, equity and gap financing transactions for the production and distribution (including P&A expenditures) of numerous motion picture, television series and new media properties. Tom acts as chief outside counsel to multiple motion picture, television, and new media production and distribution companies as well as a business advisor to many such companies in connection with their launch. He also advises such companies throughout the life span of their motion picture, television series and new media properties, including in connection with the acquisition of literary properties and the development of the properties leading up to production, all production related matters, and agreements and an assortment of distribution arrangements for such properties ranging from theatrical to physical product, television and new media distribution. Tom handles a multitude of complex entertainment and media transactions spanning the globe, with a particular emphasis on clients located in and transactions that have involved Europe, Asia and the Middle East. As a result, he brings a keen understanding of the cultural and business complexities that characterize such cross-border transactions.

Mary Sue Bissell

Trustee, VP & Exec. Dir.

Mary Sue Bissell is Vice President and Executive Director of the US-Asia Institute. She is also a member of the Institute's Board of Trustees. Ms. Bissell came to the US-Asia Institute in 1979. She worked with co-founders Esther G. Kee and Joji Konoshima as Director of Programs and Publications from 1979-84, and from 1987-90 as Executive Director. While at the Institute, Ms. Bissell planned and implemented international conferences in Washington, D.C., the People's Republic of China, the Philippines and Japan on topics such as international trade, security and telecommunications. She also coordinated government-to-government activities with Pacific-rim nations, including international exchanges with China, Korea, Hong Kong, Japan, Taiwan, Australia, Thailand, Singapore, the Philippines, Brunei, Malaysia, and Indonesia. Ms. Bissell coordinated Congressional staff trips to China, Japan, Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia, and organized policy dialogues on issues of concern to the U.S. and Asia. She edited conference proceedings from the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 5th National Leadership Conferences, and a publication on U.S. immigration policy toward Asia. She also provided oversight to the U.S.-Japan Conference on Cultural and Educational Interchange for 2.5 years. Ms. Bissell has over 30 years of experience in nonprofit management, conference planning, volunteer coordination, grant-writing, editing, strategic planning, marketing, education and fundraising. She has successfully directed the largest in-school opera education program in the U.S., reaching over 300,000 students each year; planned/implemented marketing strategy for one of the United States' top ten aquariums; directed a regional voting project for youth; served as press officer and public relations manager for U.S. Army concerns in Hawaii; worked as a program assistant for the Asian Affairs Unit of a national political party, writing the U.S.-Asia section of the foreign policy plank of the 1980 party platform; and served in the field office of South Dakota Senator George McGovern. She has received numerous local, state and national awards and recognition for writing, public speaking and community service. Ms. Bissell is a graduate of the University of South Dakota. She is married with two daughters.

Javade Chaudhri


Javade Chaudhri has worldwide experience in helping private and public sector companies transact business and undertake projects in a range of industry sectors and geographies. He advises companies on domestic and international mergers and acquisitions and strategic alliances. He also assists companies with corporate governance, compliance, and internal investigations. He has handled complex international litigation and arbitrations before ICSID and under various major arbitral rules. Javade is head of the Firm's Africa Practice. Javade rejoined the Firm in 2013 after serving as the general counsel and chief compliance officer for Sempra Energy, a Fortune 250 company with gas and electric utilities in the United States, Mexico, and South America and fossil-fuel and renewable power plants, LNG, gas pipelines, and storage businesses as well as a worldwide commodities physical and trading business. During his 10 years as general counsel, he also served as the chief environmental officer and helped manage regulatory affairs. Prior to that, Javade was the general counsel of Gateway, a $10 billion worldwide computer and technology company, where he also managed government relations, contract administration, and compliance. Javade has structured and negotiated infrastructure, technology, and other transactions in numerous countries. He has handled arbitrations under ICSID, ICC, AAA, and UNCITRAL Rules. He also has conducted international investigations relating to anti-bribery laws and other regulatory matters. He advises governments, development agencies, and nongovernmental organizations. He serves on a number of nonprofit boards and has been a faculty member at universities and institutions in the United States and around the world.

Julie Chon


Julie Chon serves as Managing Director and Global Head, Public Investment Strategy at Perry Capital, where she advises the firm on public sector-related investments globally. Founded in 1988, the firm currently manages over $10 billion allocated across a variety of asset classes including publicly traded equity and debt securities, private equity, and real estate. Prior to joining Perry Capital, Ms. Chon crafted landmark US policy responses to stabilize the financial crisis as senior advisor to US Senate Banking Committee Chairman Christopher Dodd from 2007-2011. These included the establishment of TARP, conservatorship of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, Dodd-Frank Act, and emergency funding for the International Monetary Fund. She was also appointed to the Treasury Department team for the Obama-Biden Presidential Transition Project and Senate Democratic Policy Committee staff. Ms. Chon began her career at JP Morgan Chase in New York and Citigroup in London, advising government bond issuers on international capital markets access. Ms. Chon is a trustee of the US-Asia Institute and member of the Council on Foreign Relations. She was previously a senior fellow for Global Business and Economics at the Atlantic Council. She graduated from Cornell University, serving as an elected Member of the Board of Trustees from 1996-1998.

Chris Fenton


Chris Fenton is the President of DMG Entertainment Motion Picture Group and General Manager (GM) of DMG North America. At DMG, a multi-billion dollar, publicly traded Chinese company, he is the chief architect in creating new business opportunities with North American partners, forming partnerships with Hollywood’s major studios for developing, financing, producing, marketing, and distributing various forms of globally-focused entertainment. Working as the GM of North American Operations since 2002, Fenton has signed companies such as Fruit of the Loom, Behr Paint, Spalding, and Under Armour. After being named President of DMG Entertainment’s Motion Picture Group in 2012, Fenton has orchestrated efficient collaboration with Marvel, Disney, Warner Brothers, Universal, Sony, and Alcon, earning production credits on films like Iron Man 3, Point Break, 47 Ronin, and Looper. In 2008, he closed the largest US celebrity endorsement deal ever for China, a seven-figure deal for Olympian Michael Phelps. He has lectured on China-related matters for various MBA and undergraduate classes at Stanford, the US Naval Academy, USC, UCLA, Cornell and Columbia. Since 2012, he has given presentations to members of Congress and senior policy advisors on Capitol Hill, culminating in a keynote speech at the United Nations in 2014. Fenton graduated from Cornell University in 1993 with a BS in Engineering. He serves as a Trustee on the Board of the US-Asia Institute, the Cornell University Hollywood Program, and the China Hollywood Society. He’s also an Ex Officio Board member of Valiant Entertainment and Hero Ventures, LLC as well as a voting member of the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. He lives with his wife and two children in Manhattan Beach, California.

Norman Lau Kee

Trustee & Chairman Emeritus

Born in New York City in 1927, Mr. Norman Lau Kee is one of the founding trustees and former chairman of the US-Asia Institute. He earned a B.S in Mechanical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1948 and a J.D. from Fordham University in 1955. Mr. Kee is senior partner in Kee and Lau Kee, LLP law firm. The firm represents HSBC, Citibank, Chase Manhattan, and Bank of New York in commercial mortgages, home equity loans, and co-op loan documentation and closings. Mr. Kee also specializes in commercial and residential property transactions, estate administration, as well as immigration matters. Norman Lau Kee is Vice-President of the Elizabeth Broome Realty Corporation, a New York City-based real estate development firm. He is also the Vice President of another real estate development firm, Tai Ming Development Corporation. Mr. Kee is the President and CEO of the New York-based Capital Investors and Management Corporation, a minority small business investment company. From 1969 to 1973 he served as a commissioner on the New York City Human Rights Commission, and he was also Chairman of the Federal Advisory Commission to the Immigration and Naturalization Service from 1979 to 1980. He is a Life Member of the YMCA and recipient of the Order of the Red Triangle, an accolade bestowed on him by the Greater New York City YMCA. He is an active member of many New York City Chinatown community organizations.

Lisabeth Sugahara


Lisabeth Sugahara is Vice President of Communications at Fairfield-Maxwell, Ltd. (FML), an international shipping and oil services company based in New York, NY. The company has offices in Japan and Vietnam, and does significant trade in East and Southeast Asia. Prior to joining FML, she was a communications consultant at an insurance brokerage firm working with Fortune 100 clients. Lisabeth has a long interest in Asian economies. Her MBA studies at Thunderbird, the Garvin Graduate School of International Management, focused on Asian business environments and global development; she is also a student of Mandarin Chinese. The Sugahara family has been associated with the US-Asia Institute almost since its inception. Lisabeth is pleased to continue this tradition as a Trustee of the US-Asia Institute.

Chairman Emeritus

      • Mr. Chan Tom*
      • Mr. Kay Sugahara*
      • Mr. Norman Lau Kee
      • Mr. Kaytaro G. Sugahara
      • Mr. Marlon Young

*- deceased

Trustee Emeritus

Mr. Kaytaro C. Sugahara President & CEO, Fairfield Maxwell Ltd. Click for bio Trustee Emeritus and Chairman Emeritus
Ms. Sumiye Konoshima Retired, East West Center Click for bio Trustee Emeritus
Ms. Nancy Tom Retired, Founder and Executive Director, Center for Asian Arts & Media, Columbia College Click for bio Trustee Emeritus
Mr. Marlon Young Chief Executive for the Americas, HSBC Private Bank Click for bio Chairman Emeritus

Kaytaro G. Sugahara

Chairman/Trustee Emeritus

US-Asia Institute Trustee and Chairman Emeritus Kaytaro G. Sugahara (K.G.) graduated from California Institute of Technology in 1961 with a Bachelor of Science in Engineering. He worked for the Douglas Aircraft Corporation in their Missiles and Space System Division until 1966 when he joined Fairfield-Maxwell Ltd as Vice President of their newly formed Marine Division. Mr. Sugahara was promoted to Senior Vice president in 1970, to Executive Vice President in 1975, and became President in June of 1979. During the time K.G. has been with the company, Fairfield-Maxwell, which celebrated its 50th Anniversary in 2007, expanded its worldwide presence in both the shipping and geophysical industries. Fairfield's shipping business started with crude oil tankers, its crude fleet expanding to over two million tons deadweight. Through its subsidiaries, Fairfield has been in the refrigerated and bulk cargo businesses and currently is a major player in the chemical tanker business as well as a long-term carrier for Toyota Motors. K.G. also sits on the Board of Fairfield industries, the largest and oldest wholly American owned company in the geophysical industry. Fairfield Industries gathers seismic data using its self-designed and manufactured equipment, processes this data in its advanced computer facility and now dominates the shallow water Gulf of Maxico market. K.G. is a member of the State Department Far Eastern Advisory Committee, a Trustee of the US-Asia Institute, and a member of the President's Council of the California Institute of Technology. He is also Chairman of the Board of Hexagon Curling International which was the sponsor of the World Curling Championships. K.G. is also the oldest member of the Sugahara Clan started by his father, Kay Sugahara. Kay Sugahara was an early supporter of the US-Asia Institute and Chairman of the Institute's Board of Trustees from 1981 until 1988. Kay Sugahara led the Institute's first trade mission to the People's Republic of China in September of 1981 and put into place many innovative programs that increased understanding between the U.S. and Asia. Kay Sugahara's son, Kaytaro G. Sugara, and granddaughter, Lisabeth Sugahara, continue the family tradition into the third generation as trustees at the US-Asia Institute.

Sumiye Konoshima

Trustee Emeritus

Sumiye Konoshima is a Trustee for the US-Asia Institute, and sister of the Institute's co-founder, the late Joji Konoshima. Ms. Konoshima retired from the East-West Center as Head of Research Information Service after 35 years. While at the East-West Center, she planned, organized and conducted workshops, training programs, conferences and projects on documentation, information dissemination/use with domestic and international organizations in Asia and the U.S. Program. Project subject areas included mass media, communication, telecommunication, information technology, rural/community economic development, population, education.

Nancy Tom

Trustee Emeritus

In 1997, Nancy Tom founded the Center for Asian Arts and Media at Columbia College in Chicago in order to highlight the contributions of Asian Americans to this country’s culture and history. Nancy has dedicated her life to promoting awareness of Asian American issues, art and cultures. She is also committed to philanthropic activities and supporting other Asians in the arts. After the death of her husband in the early 80s, she founded the Chan Tom Memorial Fund Foundation. In 2001, Nancy established the Helen Fong Dare Scholarship, for Columbia College students, in honor of her mother. In 2013, Nancy was named a White House Champion of Change for doing extraordinary work in the arts to create a more safe, equal, and prosperous future for their communities and the country. Nancy is a long time crusader for social justice and an advocate for the arts. She is a trustee of Columbia College Chicago, a board member of the Illinois Humanities Council, a member of four Cultural Committees of the City of Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs: Public Art, International Sister Cities, Multicultural Voices, and the International Program. In addition, she has served as a member of the Asian Advisory Council to former Governor George Ryan, the Council on Foreign Relations, Asia Society Committee, the Art Institute of Chicago's Education Department and on the advisory board of many nonprofit Asian organizations. In the 1980s, she served as a director and advisory committee member of the U.S. Asia Institute and organized the first National Asian American Conference Gala in Washington D.C. Then-President Jimmy Carter served as keynote speaker. Nancy has received numerous awards and honors for her community work in Chicago. In 1997, she received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Organization of Chinese Americans-Chicago. The OCA once again honored her in 2004 with the Woman Risk Taker and Enabler Award. In 1998, she was chosen by Today's Chicago Woman as one of the "100 Women Making a Difference." In 2003 she received a milestone award from the Asian American Institute. She is a grant recipient of the Chicago Artists International Program in 1999. She has spoken at numerous conferences, symposiums and panel discussions hosted by organizations such as the U.S.-Asia Institute, the U.S. Army, the NSFRE Arts and Humanities Network, and the International Women's Associates. Most recently, she was the Keynote Speaker at the Working Mother Media’s annual women of color conference and a selection panelist for the 2005 Thomas Jefferson Awards. Nancy’s early passion for painting developed into an interest in collecting artwork, particularly "outsider" art. She is an independent curator and has handled special arts events for the City of Chicago and various Asian-American organizations. At the age of 71, Nancy has found a new passion for film/video, producing and directing her first documentary, “Number One: The Helen Fong Dare Story” and producing many short videos. Recently Nancy created The Other Side: Chinese and Mexican Immigration to America, an arts exhibition examining the Chinese Exclusion Act through visual arts and frank discussion on a historical topic with ongoing implications. It opened in Pasadena, California at the USC Pacific Arts Museum in February 2014 and was named one of the Top 10 exhibits in Los Angeles in 2014. It opened to a record crowd of more than 3,000 guests at Houston’s Asia Society in March 2015. In doing this exhibit, Nancy hopes to help younger generations remember their past.

Marlon Young

Chairman/Trustee Emeritus

Marlon Young is Chief Executive Officer for HSBC Private Bank, Americas. In this role, he is responsible for management growth of the Private Bank’s businesses in the United States, Mexico, Central and South America. Young began his career with HSBC in 2006 as head of the company’s U.S. private banking operation and was appointed to his present role in September of the same year. He is a member of the HSBC Bank USA Executive Committee, and the HSBC Global Private Bank Management Committee. He joined HSBC after 27 years at Citigroup where he was Head of Private Client Lending at its Smith Barney division. While there, he held various leadership roles including Head of the Northeast Region for Citigroup Private Bank, Head of Investment Finance and Senior Credit Officer for the U.S. Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions. His international banking experience encompasses assignments in the Philippines, Hong Kong, Singapore & Thailand. Young also has extensive corporate banking experience covering the commercial real estate, automotive and energy industries. Young has received numerous awards due to his dedication and volunteer work including the U.S. President’s Volunteer Service Award. He is an active volunteer in Junior Achievement and the Doe Fund. He is frequently invited to speak on diversity and leadership by not-for-profit institutions; including, the Asia Society, the International Leadership Foundation (ILF) and Ascend. He also serves as Chairman and Trustee of the US Asia Institute since November 2003. He holds a master’s degree in business management from the Asian Institute of Management in Manila, Philippines, and a bachelor’s degree from the University of South Dakota.