Thanks to a generous contribution by Dr. Peter Lai Sun Lee ’64, Seattle University established the Peter L. Lee Endowed Lectureship in East Asian Culture and Civilization in April 2015. Housed in the College of Arts and Sciences and managed by the director of Asian Studies, the lectureship brings to campus prominent experts to explore the impact of East Asian thought and tradition on contemporary global issues.
“The Peter L. Lee Endowed Lectureship is designed to be interdisciplinary,” said Arts and Sciences Dean David Powers. “It will allow us to engage our students with sociohistorical context and pressing issues related to East Asian studies, modern languages, international business, comparative religion, and many other areas.”
Dr. Lee, who majored in chemistry, was one of the earliest international students to come to Seattle University from Hong Kong. Early in his career, he served as the first President of Coca Cola China. Subsequently, he led the Asian operations for several multinational companies including Mead Coated Board (then part of Mead Corporation) and Chesapeake Corporation. His most recent venture is Rondabosh International Ltd., a company he founded upon retiring from Chesapeake in 2008.
Dr. Lee received his PhD in chemistry from Michigan State University, did postdoctoral research at New York University, and studied with the great China scholar Joseph Needham at Cambridge University. He has had a longstanding association with the East Asian History of Science Foundation in Hong Kong and currently serves as its chairman. Throughout his academic, corporate, and nonprofit leadership involvement, Dr. Lee has worked tirelessly to build bridges of understanding between China and the West.