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African-American China Leadership Fellows Program

 The 2024 program is no longer accepting applications.

Program Introduction

The African-American China Leadership Fellows Program (AACLF) is dedicated to the development of mid-career African-American China professionals, striving to curb the under-representation of African-Americans in U.S.-China relations. We firmly believe that supporting rising African-American professionals is essential to enhancing the China space, improving U.S. national security and competitiveness, and better reflecting the diversity of the United States.

Now entering its fourth year, the program selects a group of outstanding, mid-career professionals and, through the guidance of experienced African-American mentors and the program team, helps them hone career skills, expand their policy knowledge, and activate professional networks to advance their careers. The ultimate goal is to help them navigate a path to senior leadership positions in their respective organizations and industries. 


Robert Anderson

Attorney-Advisor, Office of General Counsel, International Affairs, U.S Treasury

Dannielle Andrews

Faculty Advisor & Instructor, U.S. National War College

Ebonique Barker

Lead, Global Government Affairs, Underwriters Laboratories

Terri Batch

President and CEO, Global LA

Keisha A. Brown, PhD

Associate Professor of History at Tennessee State University

Daniel K. Delk, Jr.

Deputy Principal Officer, U.S. Consulate General Shanghai

Alethea Gordon

Director of Global Affairs, Global Public Policy, General Motors

Ann-Marie Padgett

Regional President, Asia and the Pacific, Bechtel Corporation

Keith Richburg

Director of the Journalism and Media Studies Centre at the University of Hong Kong

Damon V. Woods

Director, Racial Equity Alliance, XPrize Foundation. Former U.S. Diplomat

Program Format

The program spans 9 months, from mid-April through mid-December. Fellows are paired with one of the mentors above, each of whom has deep experience engaging with China. The substance of the program focuses on further developing core career capacities, including communication skills, networking, goal setting, and navigating career pathways, and then working together to actively promote career advancement. It combines twice-monthly individual sessions with a mentor with monthly cohort events. The program culminates with an in-person trip for the cohort to Washington DC or another relevant location where they will be joined by the previous years’ alumni.


Applicants should be African-Americans who have: 

  • demonstrated a commitment to elevating a China-focused career 
  • studied and/or worked abroad in Mainland China and/or Taiwan 
  • a minimum of five years’ relevant work experience
  • a strong focus and drive to achieve his/her career goals 
  • Mandarin Chinese language skills
  • Application Instructions

    We are looking for people with outstanding potential who are ready to become the next generation of leaders and mentors in the China space. All applicants should first register as members of AMS, then prepare a résumé, the names and email addresses of two references, and the answers to the following questions. 

    1. Why are you interested in this program? What do you hope to accomplish? Where are you now, and where do you hope to go in the next five years? (500 words max) 
    2. Why China? Describe your experience with and interest in China, and how China relates to your goals. (250 words max) 

    Please submit your applications by following this link. Applications will be considered on a rolling basis, so we encourage early application. Feel free to contact us with any questions at

    Support Us

    We are seeking individual and corporate sponsors to help support this critically important program. To learn more, please contact

    Programing Team

    Dewardric McNeal

    Managing Director, Longview Global LLC

    Nathaniel Ahrens

    Executive Director, American Mandarin Society

    Christina Shih

    Program Manager – Leadership Development, Workday, AACLF Program Lead, American Mandarin Society

    Rebecca Ash-Cervantes

    Program Assistant, American Mandarin Society

    We are extremely grateful for our program sponsors, without whom this program would not be possible, and whose
    program support demonstrates their strong, active commitment to increasing diversity, equity, and inclusion.

    ASG Sponsor
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