of Rice University and Professor of Political Science
of International Law
Commission on Federal Election Reform
Partnership Board of Directors
Harvard Law School
Research Center Board
Center Board of Directors
World Affairs of
Board of Directors
Bremen, Germany Board of Trustees
Center CEO group
Council on Foreign
Security Higher Education Advisory Board
of State Baker-Christopher War Powers Study Commission
efforts and accomplishments in the promotion of U.S. - China relations and the
friendship between peoples in the United States and China.
Since his first trip to the People's
Republic of China in 1980, David W. Leebron has been committed to strengthening
Traveled to China to
lecture on Foreign Investment and Project Finance in 1984 at invitation of
Chinese governmental organization.
At New York University
School of Law, Mr. Leebron served as advisor to Chinese graduate students.
As Dean of Columbia
Law School, he hosted visiting professors from China, supported the law school’s
continuing investment in Chinese Legal Studies, greatly increased the number of
Chinese graduate students, and built relationships with many of the major
Chinese law schools.
Since coming to Rice
University and Houston, he has worked to enhance Rice's Asian programs, with a
strong focus on China and to build stronger relationships with the local Chinese
In April 2005, Mr.
Leebron provided the keynote address to the Asian Chamber of Commerce of
Houston. He invited attendees to join him as advocates for international
In June 2005, Mr.
Leebron was invited by the China Education Association for International
Exchange and the Chinese Embassy in Washington to address the China-U.S.
University President Forum in Seattle, Washington, where he addressed Chinese
Ambassador Wenzhong Zhou, Director General Cao, and leaders of higher education
from China and the United States.
In the summer of 2005,
Mr. Leebron led a Rice University delegation to China meeting with a number of
the top universities and government officials in China, including Vice Minister
of Education Madam Qidi Wu. He visited universities in Beijing, Shanghai,
Tianjin and Hangzhou. Mr. Leebron also met with U.S. Ambassador to China, the
Honorable Clark T. Randt, Jr., and encouraged improvements in the visa process
for Chinese students.
In November 2005, Mr.
Leebron gave the keynote speech for Houston’s Chinese Community Center Dinner.
He asked audiences members to commit themselves to education for all and to
making possible the full potential of every human being.
Mr. Leebron has hosted
Chinese Vice Minister of Education Madam Qidi Wu on several occasions and
continues to build strong ties between the higher education institutions in
China and specifically Rice University.
In 2006, he was a
member of a U.S. delegation to China let by Secretary of Education Margaret
Spellings to promote stronger educational ties between the two countries.
During the trip, Mr. Leebron provided remarks at Tsinghua University in Beijing
at the Higher Education Roundtable on International Education hosted by the U.S.
Departments of State and Education.
In 2006, Mr. Leebron
was requested to serve on the Centennial Commission for Tongji University in
In 2007, Rice
University launched the China-U.S. Center for Environmental Remediation and
Sustainable Development, which built on a research relationship that had been
established by professors at Rice and Nankai University.
In 2007, under Mr.
Leebron’s leadership, Rice University was selected as host for the China-Rice
University Leadership Forum, a two-week visit by China’s top education leaders
(26 Chinese university presidents, chairman and vice chairman, and high
officials from the Ministry of Education and the National Academy of Education
Administration). Rice is only the third U.S. university ever selected to serve
as host, and the first one in the southern or western part of the country.
In September 2007, Mr.
Leebron announced the founding of the T.T. and W.F. Chao Center for Asian
Studies at Rice.
In October 2007 Mr.
Leebron will travel to China to participate in a conference on the role of the
humanities being held at Tianjin University.
By Mr. Leebron’s
invitation, Chinese Ambassador Wenzhong Zhou, has agreed to speak at Rice
University in 2008.
David W. Leebron became the seventh
president of Rice University in Houston, Texas, and a professor of political
science on July 1, 2004. Rice is one of the country’s premier private research
universities and home to the top-rated Shepherd School of Music, the James A.
Baker III Institute for Public Policy, the Jesse H. Jones Graduate School of
Management, Brown School of Engineering and other highly ranked programs in
natural sciences, humanities, and architecture schools.
A native of Philadelphia, Leebron is
a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School, where he was elected
president of the Law Review in his second year. After graduating in 1979, he
served as a law clerk for Judge Shirley Hufstedler on the Ninth Circuit Court of
Appeals in Los Angeles. In 1980, he taught torts as acting assistant professor
of law at the UCLA School of Law. In 1981, he joined the New York firm of
Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen & Hamilton, where he specialized in corporate law. He
became a faculty member of the New York University School of Law in 1983 and
also served as director of the International Legal Studies Program. In 1989,
Leebron joined the faculty of Columbia University School of Law, and in 1996 he
was appointed dean and named the Lucy G. Moses Professor of Law. Leebron also
served as a visiting fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Foreign and
Comparative Law in Hamburg, Germany, and as the Jean Monnet Visiting Professor
of Law at Bielefeld University. Leebron has co-authored a textbook on
international human rights and written numerous articles on issues of
international trade, human rights, and corporate finance.
Mr. Leebron is married to Y. Ping
Sun, who, since their marriage in 1990, has been his partner in building
connections to China. They have two children, Daniel and Merissa, and are
committed to raising them to know the languages and cultures of both their