After directing Asian programming for Washington, D.C.'s National Democratic Institute for International Affairs, this diplomat oversaw Asian and Pacific Security Affairs in the United States Defense Department and went on to serve as U.S. Ambassador to Burma.
After graduating from the University of Virginia with a bachelor's degree in foreign affairs, he earned both a certificate in Chinese Mandarin and a master's degree in diplomacy and law from Tufts University.
He helmed the California organization of the 1988 campaign of Democratic presidential hopeful Michael Dukakis and later assisted the California offices of the 1992 Clinton and Gore campaign.
He grew up in Georgia and Connecticut as the child of physician parents. In 2006, he married Taiwanese broadcast journalist Lee Hun-min.
During the mid-1980s, he worked as an aide to Democratic Senator Ted Kennedy.