Deborah T. Cooper
Director, Administration
Executive Assistant to the President

[email protected]

Making the KORUS FTA Sing

Briefing on U.S. Trade with South Korea

On February 14, 2018, the National Bureau of Asian Research (NBR) and Korea Foundation hosted an informational briefing for staff with experts on U.S. trade with South Korea. Speakers discussed the state of trade relations between the countries, including the KORUS Free Trade Agreement and recent U.S. tariffs on Korean goods, and answered questions from staff.



    Charles W. Boustany, Jr., Former Congressman (R-LA); Counselor, The National Bureau of Asian Research

    Clara Gillispie, Senior Director Trade, Economic, and Energy Affairs, The National Bureau of Asian Research

    Bruce Hirsh, Principal and Founder, Tailwind Global Strategies LLC


    Dan Aum, Director of Washington DC Office, The National Bureau of Asian Research

Speaker Bios

Congressman Charles W. Boustany Jr., MD, is a Counselor at NBR. Congressman Boustany retired from the U.S. Congress after serving from 2005 to 2017. He represented Louisiana’s 7th Congressional District, which later became Louisiana’s 3rd Congressional District after reapportionment. During his tenure, he served on the House Ways and Means Committee and chaired the Subcommittee on Oversight, the Subcommittee on Human Resources, and the Subcommittee on Tax Policy. He was also a senior member of the Subcommittee on Trade.

Congressman Boustany was an acknowledged leader in the areas of trade policy, international tax policy, energy policy, and foreign policy in the U.S. House of Representatives. He co-chaired the U.S.-China Working Group, the U.S.-Japan Caucus, and the Friends of TPP Caucus. Congressman Boustany was a very early promoter of U.S. exports of liquefied natural gas and crude oil.

Prior to his election to Congress, Congressman Boustany was in the private practice of medicine as a thoracic and cardiovascular surgeon in Lafayette, Louisiana.

Clara Gillispie
is Senior Director of Trade, Economic, and Energy Affairs at NBR. In this capacity, Ms. Gillispie leads research, publications, and activities for a range of NBR initiatives, including the organization’s programming on innovation and intellectual property rights. Her subject-matter expertise focuses on shaping program and research agendas on energy security, trade and innovation policies, public health and the environment, and geopolitical trends in the Asia-Pacific.

Ms. Gillispie has authored or served as lead substantive editor of numerous NBR reports that have been used in briefings with the U.S. Departments of State, Energy, and Defense; Congress; senior industry representatives; and others. Her research and analysis have also been featured in both U.S. and international media outlets, including NPR’s Marketplace and CNBC.

Prior to joining NBR in 2011, Ms. Gillispie served as a consultant for Detica Federal Inc. (now a part of BAE Systems), where she conducted program assessments and policy reviews for U.S. government clients. She has also worked both at the U.S. House Committee on Science, Technology, and Space and the American Chamber of Commerce in the People’s Republic of China. Ms. Gillispie graduated from the London School of Economics and Peking University with a dual MSc in International Affairs. Her academic and research interests focus on energy security questions, as well as technology and security in East Asia, including Sino-U.S. technology transfer policies and the behavior of Chinese netizens. Prior to her graduate studies, Ms. Gillispie received a BS from Georgetown University and attended Sophia University in Tokyo, Japan, for language training.

Bruce Hirsh is the Principal and Founder of Tailwind Global Strategies LLC, where he provides strategic advice on global government relations matters, with a particular focus on international trade and regulatory issues. Prior to establishing Tailwind, he worked as Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for Japan, Korea, and APEC, where he represented the United States at Senior Official meetings under APEC and the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement and negotiated Japan-related provisions of the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement. As Deputy Assistant USTR for WTO and Multilateral Affairs, he was lead U.S. negotiator for WTO Trade Facilitation, helping to set up the successful conclusion of the first multilateral WTO agreement in two decades, the Trade Facilitation Agreement.

From 2011 to 2014, he was Chief International Trade Counsel for the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance, where he was Chairman Max Baucus’s principal advisor on international trade and economic matters and advised Members of the Committee on these issues. In that role, he negotiated the Baucus-Camp trade promotion authority legislation. He also served at USTR as Chief Counsel for Dispute Settlement and as Legal Advisor to the U.S. Mission to the WTO in Geneva, Switzerland. Before joining USTR in 1998, he practiced law in Washington, D.C. and Tokyo, Japan.

Dan Aum is Director of NBR’s Washington, D.C., office. In this capacity, Mr. Aum leads NBR’s engagement with the U.S. Congress and the media. He works closely with NBR’s research group leaders and NBR’s executive team to develop and implement nonpartisan outreach strategies that integrate congressional needs and perspectives.

Mr. Aum comes to NBR from Capitol Hill, where he managed a portfolio of thematic and regional issues related to foreign policy, international law, and human rights on the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission. Previously, at Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights, Mr. Aum was on a strategic litigation team that brought cases before international and regional bodies, and led policy initiatives that involved regular engagement with government bodies and the media. He holds a JD from the George Washington University Law School and a BA in Philosophy from Baylor University.