About Christine Wei-li Lee (李維莉)
Christine Wei-li Lee is Managing Partner & Co-Founder of The Garry South Group, responsible for corporate communications, client services, marketing and business development. Lee is an international public relations and marketing communications specialist with more than 20 years of experience in corporate strategic communications, branding, political campaigns, media relations, general and ethnic marketing/advertising, public affairs and community outreach.
In addition to managing The Garry South Group, Lee also advises individuals and organizations on developing comprehensive strategic communications programs which better position them with their target audience groups. She offers personal Home Office Services for international investors and their families including business setup, management, corporate branding/marketing & personalized family living/education arrangements.
In 2002, California Gov. Gray Davis appointed her as a Commissioner on the California State World Trade Commission, a public-private advisory board to the Governor’s International Trade and Investment Division.
Lee served as Senior Advisor on Asian Pacific Islander American affairs to Gov. Davis’s re-election campaign in 2001-2002. She designed, supervised and implemented a proactive statewide APIA community-outreach program and media campaign, including California’s first-ever statewide gubernatorial multilingual print and television ad campaign in Mandarin, Cantonese, Korean, Japanese and Vietnamese. Lee was frequently quoted in the Asian press and was the chief spokesperson on behalf of the Governor on radio debates and at various community events. The Governor won more than 60 percent of the Asian American vote in his successful campaign for a second term.
Prior to becoming an independent communications consultant, Lee was Director of Marketing Communications – Asia/Pacific for Korn/Ferry International, the leading global executive-search firm with more than 70 offices worldwide. Based in the firm’s Los Angeles headquarters, she traveled frequently to the firm’s 14 offices in 10 Asia/Pacific countries, including Australia, Hong Kong SAR, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, the People’s Republic of China, Singapore and Thailand. Lee worked directly with the firm’s President of Asia/Pacific and was responsible for developing all aspects of strategic communications programs involving Korn/Ferry’s President & CEO, regional partners, clients, media, sponsorship programs and candidates. She created and managed a team of “marketing gurus” from Korn/Ferry offices across Asia/Pacific in order to ensure the successful execution of strategic and cohesive marketing communications programs across the Pacific.
Before joining Korn/Ferry, Lee was Media Relations Manager with Stoorza, Ziegaus & Metzger, a major women-owned PR/PA firm in California. She developed and supervised the implementation of media-relations and communications programs on behalf of clients such as J.P. Morgan, Pacific Bell, 3M, Disney, Saint John’s Hospital, New Zealand Tourism Board and Cadiz/Sun World.
Prior to joining SZM, Lee served as Public Relations Manager with the Los Angeles office of Asatsu/BBDO, a major Japanese/American advertising joint venture, and then the second-largest Asian agency in the U.S. She designed and executed creative advertising, community-outreach and media-relations programs targeting the Asian markets for the firm’s clients, including Sprint, Blue Cross of California, National/Panasonic, Pioneer and Yoshinoya.
Lee coordinated international press for the 1996 Democratic National Convention in Chicago including President Bill Clinton’s acceptance speech, and was Deputy Press Secretary for the 1995 California Democratic State Convention. She also was Deputy Press Secretary in the 1993 mayoral campaign of former Los Angeles City Councilman Mike Woo. As a freelance writer, Lee’s articles have appeared in such publications as the Los Angeles Business Journal and Glendale News-Press.
A native of Taiwan, Lee is fluent in both written and spoken Mandarin Chinese. She has extensive experience in international business issues and with the Asian Pacific Islander American community.
Lee holds a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University in New York City, where she received the prestigious di Cagno Hagen Award for best investigative story of the year on environmental justice. She also graduated magna cum laude from the University of California at Los Angeles, earning a bachelor’s degree in communication studies and being elected a member of Phi Beta Kappa.