Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

Is the Era of Free Trade Over?

September 12, 2017 @ 5:30 pm - 8:30 pm

$5 – $25

The future of free trade is in flux. Almost immediately upon taking office, President Trump moved to carry out his campaign promises to protect the American worker from “unfair” foreign competition. The president withdrew the U.S. as a party to the Trans-Pacific Partnership, mandated a study to address trade imbalances with selected countries (including several Asian trading partners), launched a renegotiation of NAFTA, is exploring an extensive intellectual property trade case against China and is considering across-the-board duties on steel imports.
Join the Japan Society of Northern California and the Asia Society Northern California for a dialogue that will assess what these developments mean for America’s economic relationships with countries throughout the world, and how Trump’s trade policy will impact the economy in the U.S. as well as in the Bay Area where foreign trade and investment has been a key driver of jobs and growth.
Wendy Cutler of the Asia Society Policy Institute, who as the former deputy U.S. trade representative, spearheaded the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement, is one of America’s top trade experts. She will discuss her perspectives on prospects for US trade relations in Asia under President Trump. Sean Randolph, Senior Director of the Bay Area Council Economic Institute, will talk about the impact of Asian trade and investment ties on the Bay Area’s economy.

Wendy Cutler
Vice President and Managing Director, Washington, D.C. Office

Wendy Cutler joined the Asia Society Policy Institute (ASPI) as Vice President and Managing Director of the Washington D.C. Office in November 2015. In these roles, she focuses on building ASPI’s presence in Washington — strengthening its outreach as a think/do tank — and on leading initiatives that address challenges related to trade and women’s empowerment in Asia. She joins ASPI following an illustrious career of nearly three decades as a diplomat and negotiator in the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR). Most recently she served as Acting Deputy U.S. Trade Representative, working on a range of U.S. trade negotiations and initiatives in the Asia-Pacific region. In that capacity she was responsible for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement, including the bilateral negotiations with Japan.
Ms. Cutler’s other responsibilities with USTR included U.S.-China trade relations, the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Forum, and the U.S.-India Trade Policy Forum. She was the Chief U.S. Negotiator for the U.S.-Korea (KORUS) Free Trade Agreement and negotiated a wide range of bilateral agreements with Japan on such issues as telecommunications, autos, and semiconductors. She has extensive multilateral trade experience as the U.S. negotiator for the WTO Financial Services Agreement and several Uruguay Round Agreements. Prior to joining USTR, Ms. Cutler worked on trade issues at the Commerce Department.
Ms. Cutler received her master’s degree from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service and her bachelor’s degree from the George Washington University. She is married and has one son.
Sean Randolph
Senior Director of the Bay Area Council Economic Institute

Sean Randolph is Senior Director of the Bay Area Council Economic Institute, where he served as President & CEO from 1998-2015. Dr. Randolph previously served as director of international trade for the State of California (1994-98), where he directed international programs to stimulate exports and introduce California companies to overseas markets. Before service with the state, he was Managing Director of the RSR Pacific Group, an international business consulting firm specializing in Asia and Latin America. His professional career includes extensive experience in the U.S. Government, on the U.S. Congress staff (1976-1980), and White House staff (1980-1981). From 1981–85 he served in the Department of State: on the Policy Planning Staff, as Special Adviser for Policy in the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs, and as Deputy/Ambassador-at Large for Pacific Basin affairs. From 1985–88 he served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Energy for International Affairs, managing nuclear proliferation, research, and global oil and gas issues.
Dr. Randolph holds a JD from the Georgetown University Law Center, a Ph.D. from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy (Tufts and Harvard Universities), a B.S.F.S. from Georgetown’s School of Foreign Service, and studied at the London School of Economics.


  • 5:30 PM – 6:15 PM Networking & Registration
  • 6:15 PM – 7:30 PM Presentation with audience Q&A
  • 7:30 PM – 8:30 PM Networking & Reception

Light appetizers and drinks provided.

Purchase Tickets:


  • No refunds after Tuesday, September 5.
  • Online registration closes at 12:00 PM on Tuesday, September 12.
  • Walk-Ins accepted at $30.00 per guest.

Organized in partnership with: 

The event venue has been provided with generous support from: 



September 12, 2017
5:30 pm - 8:30 pm
$5 – $25


(415) 986-4383
View Organizer Website


Bechtel Conference Center
500 Washington Street
San Francisco, CA 94111 United States
+ Google Map
Contact Us

We're not around right now. But you can send us an email and we'll get back to you, asap.

Not readable? Change text. captcha txt

Start typing and press Enter to search