W. Brent Christensen

Areas of Expertise – China, Health, Environment

W. Brent Christensen photoW. Brent Christensen joined the Daniel K. Inouye Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies as Foreign Policy Advisor in August 2015. In this role, Mr. Christensen advises the DKI APCSS Director and other DKI APCSS staff on U.S. foreign policy issues and serves as liaison for DKI APCSS with the Department of State and U.S. overseas missions in the Asia-Pacific region. His geographic areas of focus are China, Taiwan and Hong Kong.

Mr. Christensen most recently served as Deputy Director of the American Institute in Taiwan, the organization that manages the United States’ unofficial relationship with Taiwan. Prior to that he was Director of the State Department’s Office of Taiwan coordination, where he had a primary role in formulating U.S. policy toward Taiwan. In his posting at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing from 2007 to 2010, he served as Counselor for Environment, Science, Technology and Health, where he took the lead on environmental issues in the U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue, established the Embassy’s air quality monitoring program and led working groups on avian influenza, HIV/AIDS and climate change. In a previous assignment in Beijing, he covered macroeconomic and financial issues, including efforts to move China to adopt a more flexible exchange rate. Other overseas postings include Hong Kong and South Africa. Mr. Christensen also served as a Congressional Fellow on the staff of Senator Olympia Snowe. Before joining the Foreign Service, Mr. Christensen served as a captain in the U.S. Air Force.

Mr. Christensen currently holds the rank of Minister-Counselor in the U.S. Senior Foreign Service and during the 26 years of his State Department career has been the recipient of a number of Superior and Meritorious Honor Awards and other performance awards. He is proficient in Mandarin Chinese.
Mr. Christensen earned a DMD from the Oregon Health Sciences University, an MA in East Asian Studies from the George Washington University and a BA in Chinese language and literature from Brigham Young University. He is a native of Utah.

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