Ambassador Linda Tsao Yang
Ambassador Linda Tsao Yang chairs the Asian Corporate Governance Association based in Hong Kong, a non-profit organization dedicated to improving corporate governance practices in Asia. She served two 3-year terms as an independent, non-executive director on the board of the Bank of China (Hong Kong) from which she retired in May 2010. She was the founding chair of its Strategy and Budget Committee and a member of the board’s Audit Committee and Nomination and Remuneration Committee.
From 1993 to 1999, she was the US Ambassador and Executive Director to the Board of Directors of the Asian Development Bank in Manila. Ambassador Yang was the first woman Executive Director appointed by the US Government to the board of a multilateral financial institution and the first Executive Director appointed by President Clinton and confirmed by the US Senate.
At her retirement in December 1999, Ambassador Yang was presented the Distinguished Service Award of the US Treasury. The award citation presented by then Treasury Secretary Lawrence H. Summers, stated that, “…Among her many achievements are the successful negotiation of the general capital increase of the Bank and the replenishment of the Asian Development Fund, which together set out a major reorientation of the policy framework of Bank operations. Ambassador Yang has also been one of the main forces behind the strengthening of the Bank’s private sector operations and she has led the effort to put in place a Bank-wide approach to private sector development. Ambassador Yang played a key role in defining the Bank’s participation in the international response to the Asian economic crisis, including pushing for early and expanded attention to social impacts and social development. She has provided strong fiduciary and operational oversight of Bank operations and has worked to make the Bank more transparent and accountable.”
Ambassador Yang is dedicated to community service. She was California’s Savings and Loan Commissioner, Vice President of the Board of Administration of the California Public Employees’ Retirement System and Vice-Chairman of its Investment Committee. She is currently a Trustee Emeritus of the Asia Foundation, a director on the board of the Committee of 100 and the Center on Asia Pacific Policy, RAND Corporation, and a life member and a director on the Advisory Board of the Pacific Pension Institute and its Programme Committee. In 2007, the institute honored her with its Leadership Award. In 2008, the Hong Kong Institute of Directors conferred upon her its Director of the Year Award (Hang Seng Index constituents).
A member of the Council on Foreign Relations, Ambassador Yang is a graduate of St. John’s University in Shanghai and earned her MPhil in Economics degree from Columbia University of New York.