»Richard Watson Distinguished Lecture Series
Michael H. Armacost, former Ambassador to Japan and the Philippines
March 6, 2013Former Ambassador Armacost will be discussing the Obama administration's positions on Asian foreign policy. President Obama is the first president to live in Asia and to have an Asian Pacific viewpoint, and the Obama administration has taken a holistic approach focusing on an Asian strategy. The goal, according to national security advisor Tom Donilion, “is to sustain a stable security environment and a regional order rooted in economic openness, peaceful resolution of disputes, democratic governance, and political freedom." The Obama administration is shifting slightly from a strict focus on the middle east toward the Pacific rim. The region buys about 25 percent of American exports which are directly linked to American jobs, an issue of great importance to the American people. Expanding efforts in Asian will create more export related jobs for Americans.
+-About Ambassador Armacost
Michael H. Armacost, former ambassador to Japan and the Philippines, was a distinguished visiting fellow at the Hoover Institution until August 31, 2010. He is also the Shorenstein Distinguished Fellow at Stanford University’s Asia-Pacific Research Center.
From 1995 to 2002, Armacost served as president of the Brookings Institution, the nation's oldest think tank and a leader in research on politics, government, international affairs, economics, and public policy.
Armacost began his career in academia, as a professor of government at Pomona College. In 1969, he was awarded a White House Fellowship, assigned to the secretary and deputy secretary of state. Following a stint on the State Department's policy planning and coordination staff, he became a special assistant to the U.S. ambassador in Tokyo from 1972 to 1974, his first foreign diplomatic post. Thereafter, he held senior Asian affairs and international security posts in the State Department, Defense Department, and the National Security Council. From 1982 to 1984, he served as U.S. ambassador to the Philippines and was a key force in helping the country undergo a nonviolent transition to democracy. In 1989, President George Bush tapped him to become ambassador to Japan, one of the most important and sensitive U.S. diplomatic posts abroad.
Armacost is the author of Future of America's Alliances in Northeast Asia (Asia Pacific Research Center, 2004) coauthored with Daniel I Okimoto and Friends or Rivals? (Columbia University Press, 1996) which draws on his tenure as ambassador. He also serves on numerous corporate and nonprofit boards, including those of AFLAC, Applied Materials, Cargill, Carleton College, the Asia Foundation, and USEC, Inc.
He has received the President's Distinguished Service Award, the Defense Department's Distinguished Civilian Service Award, and the Secretary of State's Distinguished Service Award.
A native of Ohio, Armacost graduated from Carleton College and earned his master's and doctorate in public law and government from Columbia University.
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Chapman University in beautiful Southern California is located in the city of Orange just steps away from the Orange Plaza Historic District and minutes from many world class hotspots.