The non-profit California-Asia Business Council (Cal-Asia) will present the 2005 New Silk Road Award to US Senator Dianne Feinstein at its eleventh annual Asia Night dinner gala. The event will take place on Friday, June 3 at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in San Francisco.

Feinstein is being honored for her substantial contributions over many years to the expansion of business and cultural ties between California and Asia, according to Elizabeth Y.A. Ferguson, managing director of the Bay Area Family of Funds and executive vice president of the Bay Area Council, San Francisco, who serves as Cal-Asia’s president.

Advance reservations and table sponsorships can be arranged through Cal-Asia (details below). The event will be attended by more than 400 people, including California companies doing business in Asia and individuals who wish to celebrate California-Asia ties.

Feinstein’s Contributions

“Senator Feinstein, going back to her days as Mayor of San Francisco, helped set up the San Francisco-Shanghai Sister City Committee and built ties with other Asian markets,” said Ferguson.

She also cited Feinstein’s support for China’s entry into the World Trade Organization, diplomatic recognition of Vietnam, and other positive actions taken during her long Senate career, that are today helping to resolve commercial issues and improve business opportunities.

Asia-Fusion Foods, Fashions

In addition to the award to Sen. Feinstein, other features of the evening include attendance by diplomats from China, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam; a silent auction of Asian antiques and trans-Pacific airline and travel packages; a world-class fashion show of Asia-inspired apparel by Anne Namba Designs of Honolulu; and a memorable Asian-fusion dinner created for the event by the chefs of the Ritz-Carlton Hotel. Also, ABC television anchor Thuy Vu will emcee the event, along with SF City Administrator Bill Lee.

The New Silk Road Award itself consists of a rare silk tapestry, symbolizing today’s vast US-Asia commercial ties.

Previous Recipients

According to Richard Chong of Galaxaco China Group LLC, San Francisco, who serves as Cal-Asia’s chairman, last year’s award was accepted by Mr. Washington SyCip, founder of the SGV auditing and professional services firm based in Manila. “SyCip is known as ‘the Wise Owl of Asia’ for the sage advice he has given to Western firms seeking to do business in Asia,” according to Chong.

In 2003, the first year the award was given, its recipient was Dr. Daniel K. H. Chao, Chairman of Bechtel China, based in Shanghai, who is currently chairman emeritus of Cal-Asia. “He was honored for his role in building Bechtel’s business in Asia, which results in exports of US goods and services, and his personal commitment to helping California companies expand their business with Asian markets,” Chong said.

According to Chong, the 2005 Asia Night gala is enjoying enthusiastic support from companies engaged in business with Asia and from the Bay Area’s Asian communities. “Companies find Asia Night an ideal way to host customers and clients, benefit from business networking, and support the business-promotion activities of Cal-Asia.

Individuals enjoy the entertainment, fine food, fashions, and meeting new people.”

Companies wishing to sponsor dinner tables (for 10), or individuals wishing to buy tickets, are invited to contact Tony Young at Cal-Asia, at 510-523-8188 or or, for more information, visit Individual seats start at $250.

Proceeds of the gala support the seminars and business-promotion activities of the Council.

The California-Asia Business Council (Cal-Asia) is California’s leading non-profit, Asia-focused business association.

Its mission is to help California firms of all sizes develop or expand their commercial ties with the economies of Asia. Asia Night is the annual fundraiser for the group. Web site: