Board Member Bio’s

Doug Ahrens – Manager, Hapag-Lloyd (America) Inc.,

Originally from the Midwest, Doug studied linguistics and secondary education at Simpson College in Iowa and at Laval University in Quebec, Canada prior to graduating from San Francisco State in 1978. Thereafter, he taught English as a second language to primarily Chinese immigrants in San Francisco and Oakland California. Since late 1979, he has been employed by the ocean transportation company, Hapag-Lloyd AG, based in Hamburg, Germany. For the last 32 years, he has been active in sales, pricing and marketing in both Europe and in the United States. He is currently the Transpacific Sales Steering Manager for the US Midwest and Northeast. Doug has done volunteer work in China, teaching English in a school for migrant worker children in Beijing. He has raised funds to improve the facilities and purchase additional learning materials at the school. Doug lives in Kansas City, Missouri. He is married and has three children.

Frederick Jiang – Senior Vice President of Waddell & Reed, CFA

Originally from Xi’an, Shaanxi Province, Mr. Jiang graduated from China Central Institute of Finance & Banking in June 1993 with a Bachelor of Economics, International Accounting degree. He served as the President of Student Council in high school and college and received several Excellence in Leadership Awards. He came to the U.S. in 1997 and earned an MBA with an emphasis in finance/management from New York University Stern School of Business in May 1999.  Mr. Jiang received his Chartered Financial Analyst designation in 2001.

Mr. Jiang was affiliated with ABN AMRO Hoare Govett Asia, Ltd. in Hong Kong from 1994 to 1997 as an equity research analyst.  As a member of ABN AMRO’s China Research Team, he covered China’s equity market and followed the consumer durables, building construction materials and shipbuilding sectors.

Mr. Jiang joined Waddell & Reed Investment Management Company in July 1999 as an investment analyst covering Asia Pacific region.  He was named Portfolio Manager of Ivy Pacific Opportunities Fund in 2003 and was appointed a Senior Vice President in 2006. Mr. Jiang received two Lipper Fund Awards for the Best Pacific Ex-Japan Funds in 3 and 5 years in 2010. Mr. Jiang lives in Leawood, Kansas with his wife and two daughters.

Siew Lau – Financial Adviser Waddell & Reed

Siew is active in numerous non-profit organizations in the Greater Kansas City. She sits on the board of People-to-People Greater Kansas City Chapter and as the Treasurer. She is a board member and the secretary of the Kansas City Chinese American Association. Siew also is the founder and the Vice President for the Malaysian Association of Greater Kansas City. She served two terms as 1st Vice Chair with the Ethnic Enrichment Commission of Kansas City since 2008 and the commissioner for Malaysia. She served 3 years on the board of the Asian American Chamber of Commerce until the end of 2008. She is currently a member of the Leawood Chamber of Commerce.


Siew received her B.A degree from UMKC in 2001 while employed full time with Sprint in 1997. She was first employed as a graphic designer, and then later promoted to be a Mapping Analyst. In 2004 Siew joined Waddell & Reed where she is currently practicing her financial advising. On the side, Siew has been running her husband’s property management business since 2002.

Linheng Li – Ph.D. Investigator at Stowers Institute

Program Leader and a Leadership Council member in Kansas University Cancer Center. Linheng is also the President of Chinese Bio-science Investigator Society (CBIS, 2011-2013), was elected as a Fellow of The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in 2010, serves as a member for International Scientific Advisory Council for Ministry of Sciences and Technology of China (starting from 2011), a member of International Society of Stem Cell Research Program Committee (2011). Linheng also serves on the Editorial board of several top professional journal including Cell Stem Cell, Stem Cell, and Cancer Research.

Linheng graduated from Fudan University Shanghai China, in 1985, got his Ph.D. in New York University Medical Center in 1995, did postdoctoral fellow in University of Washington (1995-1999). Linheng was recruited to Stowers Institute in 2000 as an Assistant Investigator, and was promoted to Associate and Full Investigator in 2006 and 2008, respectively and to Associate and Full Professor at KUMC subsequently.

Michael Li – Vice President of American Century Investments

Michael Li is Vice President and Portfolio Manager with American Century Investments, a premier asset management firm in the US.  At his current role, he manages two large cap growth products, the American Century Ultra and the American Century Select funds.  The combined asset base of the two products is close to $10 billion. Michael became a Portfolio Manager in 2006 after serving as an analyst since 2002.  In addition, he pioneered the firm’s effort in Asia/China in forming strategic partnerships with institutions. 

Before joining American Century Investments in 2002, Michael was a scientist/project manager at the Pharmaceutical Research Institute of Bristol-Myers Squibb Co., managing cross-functional teams in filing investigative new drug applications to the FDA and providing support to researchers from drug discovery to development. He also published numerous research articles on the subjects of life-sciences tool development for the purpose of sequencing and detecting mutant proteins and genes during his pursuit of the doctorate degree.

Michael has a bachelor’s degree in materials science and engineering from the University of Science and Technology of China, a member of the Special Class for the Gifted Young, a master’s degree in business administration from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and a Ph.D. in chemistry from the University of Michigan.

Colin Mackenzie – Chinese Curator of Nelson-Atkins Museum

Colin Mackenzie joined the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in June 2009. Dr. Mackenzie was formerly curator of Asian Art at the Yale University Art Gallery, Associate Director of the Asia Society Museum, and recently Robert P. Youngman Curator of Asian Art at Middlebury College. He received his B.A. and Ph.D. from the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, and spent two years studying at Beijing University during the early 1980s. Dr. Mackenzie’s interests range widely from ancient China to contemporary Chinese art. He has contributed to a number of influential exhibitions: He co-curated Asian Games: The Art of Contest (2004) and was organizing curator for Monks and Merchants: Silk Road Treasures from Northwest China (2001) and Inside Out: New Chinese Art (1998).

John R. Phillips – Managing Partner of Husch Blackwell Sanders

John has been Managing Partner of Husch Blackwell Sanders, a Midwest law firm with which he has practiced in the areas of alternative dispute resolution, labor and employment, commercial litigation and healthcare for over 38 years.

He is a Fellow in the American College of Trial Lawyers, the International Academy of Mediators, and the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers, has been chair of the Missouri Bar Committee on Alternative Dispute Resolution, a member of the Missouri Supreme Court Committee on Alternative Dispute Resolution, has served as Special Master for the United States District Court for the Western District of Missouri in Klein et al. v. Kansas City of Missouri Firefighters (sexual harassment class action), and for the District of Kansas in Williams v. Sprint (age collective action).

He is a member of the Large Complex Litigation Panel; Commercial Panel; and the Employment Arbitration and Mediation Panels of the American Arbitration Association, CPR, and the US-China Mediation Panel of CPR/CCIPT, and has been an arbitrator in the Merrill Lynch class action and the Dalkon Shield cases.  He has been in Best Lawyers in America since 1994 and Chambers USA since 2003.

Forest Rong – Engineering Manager at Black & Veatch Corp.

Lei (Forest) Rong is an Engineering Manager and the Process Owner of Underground Transmission Line Group in the Power Delivery Business of Black & Veatch Energy. He currently supervises and manages high voltage underground and underwater electric power transmission engineering service, as well as provides technical expertise support during project development, application, permitting, procurement, and construction for domestic and international clients.
 
Mr. Rong graduated with a Bachelor of Electrical Insulation and Cables from Harbin Institute of Electric Technology in China in 1995 and a Master of Engineering from McMaster University in Canada in 2001. He is currently a Registered Professional Engineer in the state of California and Ohio of US and in the province of Alberta, British Columbia, and Ontario of Canada. Mr. Rong is also a member of Insulated Conductor Committee (ICC), Power & Energy Society (PES), and Standards Association (SA) of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). As a subject matter expert in the underground transmission industry, He has made many presentations in various industry and society conferences and training courses, participated the development of IEEE standard 1793-2012 and 1727-2013, and was an author of the “Underground Transmission Cable System Construction and Installation Practices Manual” published by Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) in 2010.

Sheree Willis – Executive Director of the Confucius Institute at the University of Kansas

Sheree served as Associate Executive Director of the Institute from May 2006 through June 2008. Prior to joining the Confucius Institute, Ms. Willis worked for the University of Kansas Center for East Asian Studies, the Center for International Business Education and Research (CIBER) and the Office of Study Abroad. Ms. Willis worked as a consultant and freelance Chinese-English simultaneous and consecutive interpreter and translator for over ten years, with an emphasis in educational exchange, environmental projects, trade, and legal interpreting. She served as a Foreign Service Officer with the U.S. Department of State in Tunis, Shanghai, Beijing, and Kuala Lumpur. She holds M.A. and B.A. degrees from the University of Kansas in East Asian Languages and Cultures (emphasis in Chinese language and literature) and is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Foreign Language Education at the University of Kansas. She has lived in China for a total of eight years, including experiences as a student and as a U.S. diplomat and travels to China frequently.