Malcolm Lee
Malcolm R. Lee

Malcolm Lee is Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for International Trade and Economic Policy, where he develops and coordinates international trade and economic policy and advice to the President as part of the National Economic Council. He served as Director of International Economic Affairs for both the National Security Council and National Economic Council from 1996 to 1998.

Mr. Lee works on U.S. trade policy, as well as economic policy with respect to Asia. While at the White House, his responsibilities have included trade and economic relations with China, Japan and Korea, steel, telecommunications, financial services, civil aviation, maritime and intellectual property policy, export promotion and the World Trade Organization. He has helped to coordinate annual China trade status renewal efforts, was part of the U.S. team that concluded the bilateral agreement with China on WTO accession, and is engaged in the President’s effort to secure permanent Normal Trade Relations for China. He helped to coordinate the Administration's response to the steel import surge, as well as U.S. economic policies toward Japan and Korea during the global financial crisis. He helped to coordinate final decisions on the WTO telecommunications and financial services agreements, as well as on civil aviation agreements with Japan, China, France, and Korea. He has also worked with Congress, business and labor on U.S. trade law reform. Mr. Lee has participated in Presidential visits to a number of countries, including Japan, Korea, China and New Zealand, and in the President’s meetings with a number of foreign leaders. Mr. Lee was part of the U.S. team at the 1999 APEC and Seattle WTO Ministerial meetings.

Before joining the NEC and NSC in April, 1996, Mr. Lee served as Special Assistant to Under Secretary of State for Economic, Business and Agricultural Affairs Joan E. Spero, where he worked on international economic matters involving NAFTA, the Uruguay Round, trade laws, sanctions, export controls, telecommunications, agriculture, worker and human rights, as well as East Asia, South Asia, and APEC. He also coordinated economic dialogues with South Korea, India and Egypt. Mr. Lee assisted Under Secretary Spero on business, press and congressional outreach.

Prior to his appointment to the State Department in July, 1993, Mr. Lee was an international trade lawyer in Washington, D.C. with the law firm Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer & Feld, focusing services and technology trade policy. He also worked for two years (1982-1984) in the Senate as a Legislative Assistant for Foreign Affairs and Defense.

Mr. Lee was a Democratic organizer in Northern California during the 1988 presidential campaign. He has also been active in the Asian American community, having served on a pro bono basis as General Counsel to the Organization of Chinese Americans and on the Immigration Committee of the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund. Mr. Lee graduated from Yale University, cum laude, in 1982, where he majored in Economics and Political Science, with a second major in East Asian Studies. He graduated from University of Pennsylvania School of Law in 1987. He is a native of Gladwyne, Pennsylvania.

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