National China Town Hall Meeting to Convene at Saint Joseph’s

Live webcast features U.S. Ambassador to China Gary F. Locke

Friday, October 12, 2012

PHILADELPHIA (October 12, 2012) – China’s rapid development and Sino-American relations have a direct impact on the lives of Americans. To help illuminate this important international relationship, Saint Joseph’s University will partner for the second consecutive year with the National Committee on United States-China Relations of New York to present the sixth annual CHINA Town Hall: Local Connections, National Reflections, on Monday, Oct. 29.

Hosted locally in the Wolfington Teletorium of Mandeville Hall, this national day of programming on China involves 50 cities throughout the United States and is designed to provide Americans the opportunity to discuss U.S.-China relations with leading experts.

A live webcast at 8 p.m. from Beijing, China, with Gary F. Locke, the 10th Ambassador of the United States of America to the People’s Republic of China, will be moderated by Stephen A. Orlins, president, National Committee on U.S.-China Relations.

Ambassador Locke, who has extensive experience working with China, assumed his duties on August 13, 2011. As secretary of commerce (2009- 2011), he co-chaired two sessions of the U.S.-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade that resulted in important changes to Chinese trade policy. As governor of Washington (1997- 2005), he strengthened economic ties between China and Washington State, more than doubling the state's exports to China to over $5 billion per year.

The webcast is preceded by a presentation on-site at 7 p.m. by China specialist Deborah Davis, Ph.D., a sociologist at Yale University, who will discuss “Creating Wealth and Poverty in a Rapidly Changing China.” Author or editor of eight books, she has analyzed the politics of the Cultural Revolution, Chinese family life, pension and welfare policy, consumer culture, property rights, social stratification, and occupational mobility. In 2004 she helped launch the Yale China Health Journal, and she currently serves as an associate editor of the Journal of Asian Studies.

A reception at 6:15 p.m. will be followed by welcoming remarks by James Carter, Ph.D., professor of history and director of Saint Joseph’s international relations program. An expert on the history of Chinese-Western relations, Carter is a fellow of the National Committee’s Public Intellectuals Program. The author of two books and numerous journal articles on China, he is the chief editor of Twentieth-Century China.


“Saint Joseph’s is honored to again be chosen to host the CHINA Town Hall,” says Carter. “The program offers an innovative use of technology to bring experts into conversation with citizens to improve understanding of the U.S.-China relationship, which is among the most important bilateral relationships, not only for these two countries, but for the entire world. Having Ambassador Locke speak with us from Beijing is a rare chance to hear from a U.S. official on the ground in China about what he is seeing and experiencing.”

CHINA Town Hall schedule:

6:15 p.m. – Reception. 6:45 p.m. – Welcoming remarks: James Carter, Ph.D., professor of history and director of the international relations program, Saint Joseph’s University. 7 p.m. – Commentary and discussion: Deborah Davis, Ph.D. (Yale University), “Creating Wealth and Poverty in a Rapidly Changing China.” 8 p.m. – Live webcast from Beijing, China: Gary Locke, U.S. Ambassador to the People’s Republic of China. 9 p.m. – Adjourn.

Mandeville Hall is located at the intersection of 54th Street and City Avenue. This event is free and open to the general public. The Starr Foundation underwrites CHINA Town Hall; SJU’s international relations and Asian studies programs sponsor the SJU event.

For more information about the Town Hall, contact Carter at

Media Contact

Patricia Allen, Senior Associate Director of University Communications, 610-660-3240,


As Philadelphia's Jesuit, Catholic University, founded by the Society of Jesus in 1851, Saint Joseph's University provides a rigorous, student-centered education rooted in the liberal arts. SJU ranks as a top university in the Northeast, with a Phi Beta Kappa chapter in the College of Arts and Sciences and AACSB accreditation of the  Erivan K. Haub School of Business. The University is also deeply committed to the Jesuit tradition of scholarship and service, earning a place on the President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll and the community engagement classification from the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. With courses offered on campus and online, SJU prepares its more than 8,000 undergraduate, graduate and doctoral students to lead lives of personal excellence, professional success and engaged citizenship.


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