Avoiding the Zodiac Omen from Tiger to Cat: Vietnam After the Party Congress

Pham Duc Trung Kien, Executive Chairman,Red Bricks Group (RBG)

RSVP Required by 5PM February 10

Today is the last day of the Year of the Tiger in Vietnam. Tomorrow is the Year of the Cat (while in China it is Year of the Rabbit).

There was so much talk about Vietnam being an Asian Tiger in the past. Now, there is a growing concern about the country getting into the "middle-income trap." There is a real risk that the country might turn out to be just a cat and not a tiger.

The Party is aware of that threat and is struggling to find the right path to accelerated prosperity for the people while maintaining political monopoly.

This talk will be from the perspective of a man on the ground and will try to separate the smoke from the fire and find the heat.

Mr. Kien Duk Trung Pham is currently the Chairman of Red Bricks Group, a private investment firm. He is the founder of the Vietnam Foundation and the Vice Chairman of the VietNamNet Media Group, the leading multi-channel media company in Vietnam. Prior to VietNamNet he was the founding executive director of Vietnam Education Foundation.

In business, Mr. Pham was a market development executive in Fortune 500 companies as well as an entrepreneur in technology and consulting startups. In government, he served in the executive branch under Presidents Reagan and Bush as well as in the U.S. Senate. He has established non-profit foundations to assist college students, orphans and the handicapped in Vietnam. Mr. Pham is publicly recognized for his leadership and management abilities.

Mr. Pham is active in international affairs. In 1986, he was chosen a Young Leader by the American Council on Germany, and in 1992 a U.S.-Japan Leadership Fellow by the Japan Society. In 1993, he was elected as a term-member of the Council on Foreign Relations and a participant in the American Assembly. Mr. Pham was the founder and chairman of the Vietnam Forum Foundation, a U.S. non-profit organization that provides college scholarships, schools and orphanage support in Vietnam. He was also a Board member of the Vietnam Assistance for the Handicapped, a leading humanitarian program to help war victims. In 1996, Mr. Pham was a recipient of the "Never Fear, Never Quit" Award.

Mr. Pham grew up in Saigon, Vietnam. In 1977 at the age of 19, he led his family on a high sea escape and came to the U.S. where they settled in Colorado. Mr. Pham became a factory worker, learned English and later attended college on scholarship. He received a BS in Marketing and International Business from the University of Colorado at Boulder, and won a scholarship to study in England. His graduate degrees, earned concurrently at Stanford University, include an MBA in International and Organizational Management, an MA in International Economics and a special diploma in Public Policy Management. In 1990, Stanford University named Mr. Pham among of the "Most Outstanding Alumni" in the school's 100-years history. Mr. Pham is former White House Fellow and a recipient an honorary Doctorate of Law degree from Pfeiffer University.

Monday, February 14, 2011 | 11:45 am — 1:15 pm
Okimoto Conference Room, Encina Hall East, 3rd Floor

Shorenstein APARC