National China Town Hall from Beijing to be telecast at St. Edward’s School

VERO BEACH — Saint Edward’s School has been chosen as one of 50 sites nationwide to present CHINA Town Hall, a live telecast from Beijing presented by the National Committee on United States-China Relations. The program will take place on Monday, October 18 at 7:00 the Waxlax Center for the Performing Arts on the Saint Edward’s campus, 1895 Saint Edward’s Drive in Vero Beach. The event is free and open to the public.

United States Ambassador to China, Jon M. Huntsman, Jr., will be the featured speaker at CHINA Town Hall; he will discuss the U.S.-China relationship in a live webcast from Beijing.  He will then respond to questions from audience members at venues throughout the country in a conversation moderated by National Committee President Stephen A. Orlins.

Prior to assuming his current position in August 2009, Ambassador Huntsman was elected twice as Governor of Utah, served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Asia, U.S. Ambassador to Singapore and Deputy U.S. Trade Representative (USTR). At USTR, Mr. Huntsman negotiated dozens of trade and investment agreements for the United States with numerous countries, including China.  Ambassador Huntsman’s public service career began as a White House staff assistant to President Ronald Reagan.

Facilitating the live telecast at Saint Edward’s School will be China specialist Keith W. Abell of Sungate Properties. Mr. Abell is a treasurer and member of the Board of Directors of the National Committee on United States-China Relations and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He is co-founder of Sungate Properties, a real estate investment advisory firm based in New York. He was formerly co-founder and vice-chairman of GSC Group, an alternative investment management firm which he grew from inception to over $20 billion of assets under management by the time of his departure in early 2007.  He also was co-founder and co-chairman of Tishman Speyer GSC China Fund, later known as Tishman Speyer China Fund, an $890 million fund dedicated to real estate development in China.  Prior thereto, he was a managing director of The Blackstone Group, based in Hong Kong and Tokyo, where he established investment banking and principal investment businesses for Blackstone.  Before that, he was a vice president at Goldman Sachs & Co.

Mr. Abell holds an MBA from The Wharton School, and an MA in International Studies from the University of Pennsylvania, where he was a Joseph H. Lauder Fellow.  He also holds a BA with honors from Brown University, and has studied at The Beijing Foreign Languages Institute and at the University of Salzburg.

Mr. Abell will address topics of interest to the local community, including economics, the environment, security, trade and wealth management. He will provide an introduction to the guest assembled in the Waxlax Center for the Performing Arts and will facilitate the question and answer portion of the telecast interface with the Ambassador in Beijing.

The National Committee on United States-China Relations is the leading national, non-partisan public affairs organization devoted exclusively to building constructive and durable relationships between the United States and China.  The Committee’s continuity of experience and depth of associations in Greater China and the United States make it a national resource.  The Committee creates opportunities for informed discussion and reasoned debate about issues of common interest and concern to the

United States, the People’s Republic of China, Hong Kong SAR and Taiwan.

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