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Christina Tchen

Assumed office 
January 20, 2009
President Barack Obama
Deputy Brian Bond
Buffy Wicks
Preceded by Julie Elizabeth Cram

Nationality  United States
Political party Democratic
Alma mater Harvard University,
Northwestern University School of Law
Occupation Corporate and public interest litigator
Profession Attorney
We create and coordinate opportunities for direct dialogue between the Obama Administration and the American public

Christina M. "Tina" Tchen (simplified Chinese: 陈远美traditional Chinese: 陳遠美,pinyin: Chén Yuǎnměi) (born January 25, 1956) is an American lawyer and the Director of the White House Office of Public Engagement.


Early Years and Education

Tchen was born in the U.S. to Chinese immigrants who fled Communist China in 1949. She grew up near Cleveland, Ohio where her father worked as a psychiatrist and her mother as a scientist. [1] She graduated from Harvard University and received her law degree in 1984 from Northwestern University School of Law.

Career Experience

After graduation from Harvard, Tchen worked for several years for the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services as a budget analyst. She then went to law school, and after graduation went to work as an associate attorney for the Chicago office of the law firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom.[1]

Tchen worked at Skadden for 25 years where she specialized in litigation at all levels of the state and federal courts. She represented companies, officers and directors in shareholder class and derivative actions. She also handled a wide range of commercial, intellectual property, and employment-related litigation, and represented public agencies in state and federal class actions, including the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, the Illinois Department of Public Aid and the Chicago Housing Authority. She was a partner at Skadden for 13 years before her appointment to the Obama administration. [1]

Community and Professional Service

Tchen has served on several boards for organizations involved in public, legal and social policy: the Chicago Bar Association Foundation; the Field Foundation of Illinois (chairman of the board); the Chicago Public Library, (trustee); and the Chinese American Service League{board member).[2]

Tchen has served on the Judicial Nominations Commission for the Northern District of Illinois and has served in several leadership positions with the American Bar Association Section of Litigation.


Tchen is the recipient of a number of awards recognizing her contributions in the legal field: Leadership Award from the Women's Bar Association of Illinois (1999); "Women of Achievement" award from the Anti-Defamation League (1996); and Chicago Lawyer (Magazine) "Person of the Year" (1994). She was selected for inclusion in Chambers USA guide to America’s Leading Lawyers for Business (2008) and The Best Lawyers in America (2009). She also was selected as one of the top three women business lawyers in Illinois by the Leading Lawyers Network. 2007[3]

Political Donations

Christina Tchen made 13 donations totaling $7,850 to various Democratic political campaigns in 2008. [4] She was also an early supporter of Barack Obama's run for the U.S. presidency, and was an effective fundraiser for his campaign.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d Who Runs Gov. "Profiles: Christina M. Chen,, accessed August 2, 2009.
  2. ^ Staff bios.Tchen, Director, "Office of Public Engagement",
  3. ^ "President-elect Obama announces more key White House staff", ""
  4. ^ Political Campaign Contributions.[1],"Christina Tchen"], Note: The dollar amount given on the main webpage is cumulative. To view the annual contributions, click on the website link.

External links



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