Naoko Aoki is currently an adjunct political scientist for the RAND Corporation in Washington D.C. Dr. Aoki’s research interests include security issues in the Asia-Pacific region with a focus on North Korea, nuclear security policy, security cooperation and the impact of domestic politics on international security policy. She was formerly with Kyodo News, Japan’s largest news agency, reporting on the Japanese government from Tokyo before serving as a Beijing correspondent. She also covered the Six-Party Talks on North Korea’s denuclearization in Beijing. Dr. Aoki holds a Ph.D. in international security policy from the University of Maryland, College Park, an M.A. in international relations and international economics from The Johns Hopkins University, Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) and a B.A. in English from Sophia University in Tokyo, Japan.
Michael Auslin is the inaugural Payson J. Treat Distinguished Research Fellow in Contemporary Asia at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, and a senior fellow in the Asia and National Security Programs at the Foreign Policy Research Institute. A historian by training, he specializes in contemporary and historical U.S. policy in Asia and political and security issues in the Indo-Pacific region. He is the author or editor of six books, including the forthcoming Asia’s New Geopolitics, as well as the best-selling The End of the Asian Century: War, Stagnation, and the Risks to the World's Most Dynamic Region. He is a longtime contributor to the Wall Street Journal and National Review, and his writing appears in other leading publications, including The Atlantic, Financial Times, Foreign Affairs, and Politico. Previously, Auslin was an associate professor of history at Yale University, a visiting professor at the University of Tokyo, and a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute. He is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society, and was a Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum, a Fulbright Scholar, and a German Marshall Fund Marshall Memorial Fellow, among other honors. He serves as the Vice Chairman of the Wilton Park USA Foundation.
Lee Feinstein is founding Dean and Professor of International Studies at the Hamilton Lugar School at Indiana University Bloomington. Prior to joining HLS, he served as U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Poland (2009-2012). Before that he was a senior fellow and deputy director of studies at the Council on Foreign Relations, specializing in U.S. foreign policy, international institutions and national security affairs. He served on the Presidential Transition Team for President Obama and as Principal Deputy Director and member of the Policy Planning Staff at the Department of State from 1994-2001. Feinstein serves on the board of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, a presidentially appointed position, and is a member of the Museum’s Executive Council. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and serves on the Board of the Kosciusko Foundation, on the Advisory Council of the Indiana University Center for Global Health, and on the Indiana Advisory Committee of the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition. He is the author of Means to an End: U.S. Interest and the International Criminal Court (with Tod Lindberg), and a regular commentator on international affairs.
Craig Kafura is the assistant director for public opinion and foreign policy at the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, a Security Fellow with the Truman National Security Project, and a Pacific Forum Young Leader. Kafura holds a M.A. in political science from Columbia University and a BA in political science from Yale University.
Wendy Leutert is the GLP-Ming Z. Mei Chair of Chinese Economics and Trade at the Hamilton Lugar School of Global and International Studies at Indiana University. Her research focuses on Chinese political economy, specifically the reform and globalization of China's state-owned enterprises and the political mobility of their leaders. Previously, she was the An Wang Postdoctoral Fellow at the Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies, Harvard University; Postdoctoral Fellow at the Columbia-Harvard China and the World Program at the School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University; and Postdoctoral Fellow at the Center for the Study of Contemporary China, University of Pennsylvania. She holds a Ph.D. and MA in government from Cornell University, a MA in international relations from Tsinghua University in Beijing, and a BA in political science and philosophy from Wellesley College.
Adam Liff is assistant professor of East Asian International Relations at Indiana University’s Hamilton Lugar School of Global and International Studies (EALC Department), where he also serves as founding director of its “21st Century Japan Politics & Society Initiative” (21JPSI) and founding organizer of its “East Asia and the World” speaker series. His research focuses on international security and the Asia-Pacific, with emphasis on Japanese and Chinese security policy; U.S. Asia-Pacific strategy; the U.S.-Japan alliance; and the rise of China. Beyond IU, Dr. Liff is a Non-resident Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution and Associate-in-Research at Harvard University’s Reischauer Institute of Japanese Studies and Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies. He holds a Ph.D. and M.A. in Politics from Princeton University, and a B.A. from Stanford University.
Sherry L. Martin is the Acting Asia Division Chief in the U.S. Department of State’s Office of Opinion Research, where she has managed the Japan portfolio for nearly nine years. Previously, she was an Associate Professor at Cornell University, jointly appointed to the Government Department and the Program in Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. She’s the author of Popular Democracy in Japan: How Gender and Community are Changing Modern Electoral Politics (Cornell University Press, 2011), and several book chapters and peer reviewed articles. She holds an undergraduate degree in Politics from Princeton University, a PhD in Political Science from the University of Michigan.
Emily Metzgar is an associate professor in The Media School at Indiana University. Her work focused on public diplomacy has appeared in Communication Law & Policy, International Journal of Communication, Journalism Studies and elsewhere. Her commentary has appeared in Columbia Journalism Review, USA Today, Los Angeles Times and other outlets. Metzgar is author of The JET Program and the U.S.-Japan Relationship: Goodwill Goldmine, published by Lexington Books in 2017. Her current project, focused on the policy and politics of U.S. information diplomacy since World War II, is tentatively titled The American Narrative. Completion of that manuscript is expected in 2020.
Kenichi Okada is the Consul-General of Japan in Chicago, a position he assumed on October 14, 2019. The jurisdiction of the Consulate-General of Japan in Chicago covers 10 states in the Midwest and Great Plains: Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin. This is Mr. Okada’s sixth overseas assignment, and his previous postings include the Embassies of Japan in China, the U.S., and the Republic of Korea; the Japan-Taiwan Exchange Association in Taipei; and the Consulate-General of Japan in Shanghai. In the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Tokyo intermittently from 1994 to 2018, Mr. Okada acted as the expert on Asia with a focus on China and North Korea at the Asian Oceanic Bureau, the Intelligence and Analysis Service, and the Minister’s Secretariat. Mr. Okada joined the Ministry in 1988 and he studied at the University of Tokyo, Peking University, and Harvard University. While studying at the University of Tokyo, he met his wife, Yuko. They have three children: two sons and one daughter.
Andrea Richter-Garry currently serves as the Vice President of International Engagement at the Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC). In her role, Richter-Garry oversees international business development events, including six foreign-based offices. She also manages relationships with foreign governments on behalf of the IEDC. Previously, Richter-Garry held the role of Advance Lead to President Barack Obama at the White House where she led teams to prepare the logistical, security and communications aspects for the President’s foreign and domestic travel. Richter-Garry began her government career at the U.S. Department of State in 2009 and honed an expertise in economic statecraft and international summit development. While holding the role of Chief of Staff of the Bureau of Energy Resources within the Department, she shaped foreign policy engagement at the critical nexus of energy and national security. She hails from Watertown, Minnesota and completed her B.A. in Political Science, Global Studies and German at Hamline University in St. Paul, MN and received her M.A. in European Studies from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service. She currently resides in Indianapolis, Indiana, and sits on the boards of the State International Development Organization, America China Society of Indiana, U.S. Midwest Japan Association and Ready to Ready Indiana.
Richard Samuels is Ford International Professor of Political Science and director of MIT’s Center for International Studies. He has been head of the MIT Political Science Department, Vice-Chair of the Committee on Japan of the National Research Council, and Chair of the Japan-US Friendship Commission. He has also been elected to the American Academy of Arts & Sciences and was awarded an imperial decoration, the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star by the Emperor of Japan and the Japanese Prime Minister. His study of the political and policy consequences of the 2011 Tohoku catastrophe, "3:11: Disaster and Change in Japan," was published by Cornell University Press in 2013. Samuels' Securing Japan: Tokyo's Grand Strategy and the Future of East Asia, was a finalist for the Lionel Gelber Prize for the best book in international affairs. Machiavelli's Children won the Marraro Prize from the Society for Italian Historical Studies and the Jervis-Schroeder Prize from the International History and Politics section of American Political Science Association. Earlier books were awarded prizes from the Association for Asian Studies, the Association of American University Press, and the Ohira Memorial Foundation. In 2014 he was appointed Einstein Visiting Fellow at the Free University of Berlin, where he directs a research group on East Asian Security during the summer. His history of the Japanese intelligence community, Special Duty, was published in October 2019.
Jim Schellinger is the Secretary of Commerce for the state of Indiana, serving as a member of Governor Eric Holcomb’s cabinet and leading the state’s domestic and international economic development. Secretary Schellinger previously served as president of the Indiana Economic Development Corporation under Governor Mike Pence, helping lead Indiana business growth and Hoosier job creation efforts as well as key initiatives like the Indiana Regional Cities Initiative and the state’s $1 Billion Innovation and Entrepreneurship Initiative. Schellinger was appointed to the role in August 2015 after serving two years as a member of the IEDC Board of Directors. Prior to serving the state in his current role, Secretary Schellinger most recently served as the Chairman/CEO of CSO Architects, a 58-year-old architectural firm, where he practiced architecture since 1984. Under Schellinger’s leadership, CSO led landmark projects such as the Indianapolis International Airport, the JW Marriott, and the Palladium at the Center for the Performing Arts. Secretary Schellinger was appointed by U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross to serve on the U.S. Investment Advisory Council, where he advises on national strategies and efforts to increase foreign direct investment. He is also a member of the Dean’s Council for IU School of Public and Environmental Affairs; board member for The International Center; and member of Governor Holcomb’s Executive Council on Cybersecurity. Secretary Schellinger is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame School of Architecture.
Mireya Solís is the director of the Center for East Asia Policy Studies, Philip Knight Chair in Japan Studies, and a senior fellow in the Foreign Policy program at the Brookings Institution. Dr. Solis is an expert on Japanese foreign economic policy, U.S.-Japan relations, international trade policy, and Asia-Pacific economic integration. Dr. Solis has authored several influential books including her most recent book “Dilemmas of a Trading Nation: Japan and the United States in the Evolving Asia-Pacific Order” (2017) and “Banking on Multinationals: Public Credit and the Export of Japanese Sunset Industries” (2004). Dr. Solis also gives commentary to The New York Times, Financial Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Politico, The New Yorker, Nikkei, Kyodo News, Asahi Shimbun, Jiji Press, Japan Times, NHK World, Bloomberg, CNN, and BBC. Dr. Solis holds a Ph.D. in government and a master's in East Asian studies from Harvard University, and a bachelor's in international relations from El Colegio de México.
Rie Watanabe is currently an Abe research fellow at Harvard University and an Associate Professor at Aoyama Gakuin University. Dr. Watanabe’s research interests include comparative climate and energy politics in advanced democracies, and theories of policy processes. Dr. Watanabe has also authored the book Climate Policy Changes in Germany and Japan: A Path to Paradigmatic Policy Change (Routledge 2011). Notably, Dr. Watanabe has served as a member of the Japanese team at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Dr. Watanabe holds a Ph.D. in political science from Otto-Suhr Institute for Political Science, Free University of Berlin, and an L.LB and L.LM from University of Tokyo.