Bringing China to Southern Oregon - 2010

The Oregon-China Investment and Trade Conference Hosting a China Delegation – June 3-6, 2010

Organizer: Southern Oregon China Connection Following a December, '09 telephone call between Sunun Setboonsarng, Oregon's International Trade Office and Irene Kai and David Wick, a meeting with Oregon State Representative Dennis Richardson, and the resulting January 18, 2010 meeting of nineteen Rogue Valley leaders focused on creating a China strategy for southern Oregon, the Oregon Fujian Sister State Association (OFSSA) created the OFSSA Southern Oregon Chapter, also known as Southern Oregon China Connection. The Board of Directors of OFSSA and State Representatives Richardson and Buckley asked Irene Kai to be President, and David Wick to be Vice President of Southern Oregon China Connection (SOCC). The charter is to develop an economic and cultural relationship between southern Oregon and China. Oregon has been a sister state with Fujian Province, China since 1984 and OFSSA serves as a primary liaison between Oregon's legislature, governor, business community and China in order to increase commerce, tourism and educational ties.

The June 4-6, 2010 visit by a 23 person delegation from China is a first of its kind, and a major event in establishing an economic and cultural relationship between southern Oregon and China. The delegation was made up of government officials, business investors and media professionals. In addition, China’s Consul General and four of his top staff from San Francisco came and attended all events. This is significant! Mr. Jin Lan, President of OFSSA, organized the delegation from China and SOCC, located in Ashland Oregon, organized the southern Oregon itinerary and activities. 

Steering Committee – The Southern Oregon China Connection

(SOCC) Steering Committee members are:

  • State Representative Buckley
  • Carolyn Hill Southern Oregon Visitor Association (SOVA)
  • State Representative Richardson
  • Irene Kai Silver Light International
  • State Representative Esquivel
  • David Wick Silver Light International
  • Jin Lan, OFSSA, Octaxias Co. (not shown)

The prime purpose was to provide a familiarization tour to see highlights of southern Oregon and meet its people to pave the way for economic development through tourism and business opportunities.

“With China's growing purchasing power, rapid economic liberalization and relaxed restrictions on overseas travel, tourism has emerged as a new growth industry for China. The mainland has a middle class of more than 300 million people able to travel to the U.S.” - Advertising Age, October 28, 2009

For China, southern Oregon is an unknown territory and our region has so much to offer these travelers who are on the move! Jacksonville and Ashland in particular have a history involving Chinese culture and people. This developing relationship will bring greater economic well being to southern Oregon and contribute to greater global well being.  

2010 Conference Activity Photos

2010 Launch Meeting