Gao Qing is the Executive Director of the Confucius Institute U.S. Center – the national center that coordinates more than 100 Confucius Institutes in the United States. He has been serving as the Director of the Confucius Institute at George Mason University (CIMason) since 2010, where he oversees the programming, finance, and operations. CIMason received the “Confucius Institute of the Year” award in 2013. Gao himself received the “Individual Excellence” award in 2012 from Confucius Institute Headquarters. He has chaired panel discussions on the topics of assessment and evaluation, teaching technologies, program development in International Confucius Institute Conferences, and given lectures at Chinese Director Training programs since 2012. He is also a faculty member of Arts Management and Special Assistant to the Dean of College of Visual and Performing Arts for China and Global Initiatives at George Mason University. He develops various collaborative relations between George Mason University and leading Chinese arts, cultural, and educational institutions on philanthropy and arts management, as well as educational partnerships. In addition, he assists with business development initiatives for investment and trade between East Asia and Virginia. Before joining Mason in 2010, he worked at US-China Policy Foundation – a think tank in DC. He conducted research on Sino-US cultural and political relations, and managed China Materials Service Center for four years. Gao completed his Masters degree from the Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, George Mason University and Bachelors degree from the School of Management, Fudan University.
External Communications Liaison
Professor William Reeder has enjoyed a 40-year career in education, management, philanthropic administration and the arts. Throughout his career, Bill has raised over $250 million in private funds for the arts and education and has developed innovative public private partnerships that resulted in an additional $100 million for cultural facilities. Currently Bill is as a Professor of Arts Management at George Mason University and holds the Imminent Scholar’s Heritage Chair of Cultural Criticism. Bill also serves as Co-Director of Mason’s Confucius Institute. In 2015, Bill retired after 14 years as the founding Dean of the College of Visual and Performing Arts at George Mason. As Dean, Bill managed a $28 million budget, and was responsible for eight academic divisions: The School of Music, School of Art, School of Dance, School of Theater, Arts Management Masters Program, Film and Video Studies Program, Computer Game Design Program and the Potomac Arts Academy. Bill also managed two campus-based regional performing arts centers, the Center for the Arts in Fairfax, and the Hylton Performing Arts Center in Manassas, Virginia and oversaw the Great Performances and Hylton Presents series. Prior to joining George Mason, Bill was Vice President and General Manager of the Washington Performing Arts Society. For two years, Bill was with the Sallie Mae Corporation, where he was the Founding Director of the Sallie Mae Trust for Education. From 1993 to 1997, Bill was President of the Saint Louis Conservatory of Music, then for six years served as Executive Director of the Levine School of Music, in Washington D.C. Early in his career, he was on the voice faculty of Illinois State University and Indiana University, Bloomington, where he also held administrative positions. For eight years, Bill was a leading operatic tenor engaged by the Zurich, Switzerland Opera Company. He performed over 25 leading tenor roles in Zurich, Munich, Vienna, Salzburg, and other major venues throughout Europe. His principal conductors were Ferdinand Leitner, Carlo Maria Giulini, and Marek Janowski. Stage directors included Goetz Friedrich and Harry Kupfer. Ioan Holender, the longest serving General Director of the Vienna Staatsoper, managed Bill’s opera career. Bill holds Bachelors and Masters degrees from Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri. He completed 55 hours of Doctoral credits at Indiana University, Bloomington, and holds a Certificate in Fund Raising Management from the Indiana University/Purdue University Center on Philanthropy.
Sarah Parshall is the Program Manager at the Confucius Institute U.S. Center where she oversees the strategic development and implementation of the Center’s programs. Prior to joining the CIUS Center, Sarah was involved in a wide array of educational and cross-cultural youth related work. This included being a teacher at a DC public charter school and a certified restorative justice facilitator for Fairfax County Public Schools. She also served on staff for two different international youth leadership programs including the Indonesia U.S. Youth Leadership Program and the Benjamin Franklin Summer Institute, both programs seeking to build cross cultural understanding among high school-aged youth from the United States, Indonesia, and central asian countries, respectively. While earning her Master’s degree, Sarah was the graduate assistant for the University Life Arlington department at George Mason University where she developed, coordinated and promoted student centered events and campus wide engagement initiatives. One of her favorite programs at the CIUS Center is the annual National Honors Gala, where she gets to meet Confucius Institute students from across the country and hear their unique stories of cross-cultural learning and exchange. Sarah received both her Masters and Bachelors from George Mason University in Conflict Analysis and Resolution, graduating Magna Cum Laude. She is fluent in Mandarin.
Program Associate, Cultural Programs
Lauren Schick is a Program Associate in cultural programs at the Confucius Institute U.S. Center. She was a former Visitor Services Associate at Hillwood Estate, Museum, and Gardens, where she worked with a team of professionals and volunteers to ensure successful visitor experiences. Lauren is the former Women’s History and Resource Coordinator at the General Federation of Women’s Clubs, a historic nonprofit committed to community improvement through volunteer service. There, she connected organization members and volunteers to resources in the organization’s archive, coordinated management of the Federation’s headquarters, and acted as the staff liaison to charitable funds that support the preservation of the organization’s collections and property. She is a past Curatorial Intern at Glenstone in Potomac, Maryland, and was an intern in the development office at the National Museum of African Art in 2011. Lauren holds a BA in Art History with a minor in Chinese Language from Kenyon College, and is working towards her MA in Arts Management at George Mason University.