CLEMENCY THROUGH DIALOGUE

How Dui Hua Works

About Dui Hua

Dui Hua (对话, meaning “dialogue” in Chinese) is a nonprofit humanitarian organization that seeks clemency and better treatment for at-risk detainees through the promotion of universally recognized human rights in a well-informed, mutually respectful dialogue with China. Focusing on political and religious prisoners, juvenile justice, women in prison, and issues in criminal justice, our work rests on the premise that positive change is realized through constructive relationships and exchange.

Our Story

Founded in April 1999, Dui Hua works to advance human rights through well-informed, respectful dialogue with China. Learn more about some of Dui Hua’s accomplishments since then.

1999

Dui Hua is incorporated as a nonprofit with the dual purpose of uncovering the names of prisoners of conscience in open-source publications and engaging the Chinese government about these prisoners.

2000

Dui Hua establishes the Political Prisoner Database, which will grow to be the largest database of Chinese prisoners of conscience on the globe.

2001

The US Department of State awards Dui Hua Founder & Executive Director John Kamm the Eleanor Roosevelt Award for Human Rights for engaging China in “results-oriented dialogue on human rights.”

2002

Executive Director John Kamm meets paroled Tibetan prisoner Takna Jigme Sangpo, marking both the release of the longest-serving Tibetan political prisoner and the first Chinese government-approved meeting between a foreigner and a prisoner under house arrest.

2003

Dui Hua welcomes the release of Tibetan singing nun Ngawang Sangdrol, who is believed to be China’s youngest and longest serving female prisoner convicted of counterrevolution. 

2004

Executive Director John Kamm becomes the first businessman to win a MacArthur Fellowship, which recognizes “individuals who have shown extraordinary originality and dedication in their creative pursuits and a marked capacity for self-direction.” The program describes Kamm as a “human rights strategist.”

2005

The UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights grants Dui Hua Special Consultative Status.

2006

Dui Hua hosts Li Shi’an, professor from Ren Min University and board member of the Chinese Association for Human Rights Studies, in the Bay Area. Activities of the program include visits to criminal justice and penal facilities, as well as a speech at Stanford. 

2007

Dui Hua opens its Hong Kong office.

2008

China’s Supreme People’s Court travels to the United States to participate in its first Juvenile Justice Expert Exchange with Dui Hua. US Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy (center) meets with the delegation.

2009

Dui Hua participates in the first UN Universal Periodic Review of human rights in China and publishes the very first volume of Dui Hua Reference Materials on China’s Criminal Justice System.

2010

At the invitation of the Supreme People’s Court, Dui Hua sends a delegation to Beijing and Qingdao for the second Juvenile Justice Expert Exchange.

2011

Dui Hua expands its mission to include women in prison and juvenile justice.

2012

Dui Hua hosts its third Juvenile Justice Expert Exchange in partnership with China’s Supreme People’s Court. A Chinese delegation spends one week studying the juvenile systems in the San Francisco Bay Area.

2013

The Economist cites Dui Hua’s decade-long tally of Chinese executions as the “best figures available” on the country’s capital punishment statistics.

2014

Dui Hua holds an international symposium on women in prison with the Centre for Comparative and Public Law at the Faculty of Law, University of Hong Kong; Center for Criminal Procedure and Reform at Renmin University Law School; and Penal Reform International.

2015

Dui Hua welcomes the release of American geologist Xue Feng (薛锋), who had been imprisoned for “illegally procuring state secrets” and was reunited with his family in Houston after his release.

2016

Dui Hua welcomes the release of professor and attorney Chen Taihe (陈泰和), a leading voice for the adoption of the jury system in China. Dui Hua surpasses 34,000 political prisoners documented and 5,000 prisoners’ names raised with the Chinese government since its founding in 1999.

2017

In November, 2017 Dui Hua and the Supreme People’s Court held its fifth juvenile justice exchange on reform of the juvenile trial system. The exchange was held on November 8-9 and was attended by over forty Chinese participants, including representatives from the Office of Juvenile Trials under the Supreme People’s Court’s Research Department and juvenile judges from courts across fifteen provinces in China.

John Kamm Remembers

Dui Hua's Executive Director, John Kamm, has spent decades advocating on behalf of at-risk detainees in China. In an ongoing blog series, John recounts the stories of his extensive work before and since the establishment of Dui Hua.

Learn More

Meet Our Team

Dui Hua’s team is dedicated to advancing rights through mutually respectful dialogue. Founder and Executive Director John Kamm, a businessman-turned-activist, possesses unique expertise and insight on China’s at-risk detainees. The Board consists of eight members, all with long-standing concern for human rights in China. Dui Hua staff work in San Francisco and Hong Kong.

John Kamm

Founder, Chairman

Read Bio

John Kamm

Founder, Chairman

John Kamm is an American businessman and human rights campaigner active in China since 1972. He is the founder and chairman of The Dui Hua Foundation. Kamm was awarded the Department of Commerce’s Best Global Practices Award by President Bill Clinton in 1997 and the Eleanor Roosevelt Award for Human Rights by President George W. Bush in 2001. In September 2004, Kamm received a MacArthur Fellowship for “designing and implementing an original approach to freeing prisoners of conscience in China.” Kamm is the first businessman to be awarded a MacArthur Fellowship.

Since his first intervention on behalf of a Chinese prisoner in May 1990, Kamm has made more than 100 trips to China to engage the government in a dialogue on human rights, focusing on the treatment of prisoners and conditions in prisons. He has made 10 visits to Chinese prisons and has submitted requests for information on more than 1,000 prisoners. In the words of The New York Times, “No other person or organization in the world, including the State Department, has helped more Chinese prisoners.”

Kamm received a BA from Princeton University (1972) and an MA from Harvard University (1975). He was the Hong Kong correspondent and representative of the National Council for US-China Trade (1975-1979) and President of the American Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong (1990). He also managed Occidental Chemical Corporation’s business in China and the Far East (1986-1991).

Harold Furman, II

Director

Read Bio

Harold Furman, II

Director

Harold W. Furman II is the chairman and managing director of The Furman Group, Inc., a public affairs and professional consulting firm with offices in Washington, DC, and San Diego, California, that provides consulting services to public and private-sector clients involved in the development and financing of water, sanitation, energy, and transportation projects.

Prior to founding The Furman Group in 1992, Furman was a partner in the Washington, DC office of an international law firm that he joined after serving as principal deputy assistant secretary of the Interior for water and science in President Ronald Reagan’s administration. In that capacity, Furman was responsible for the management of the Bureau of Reclamation, the US Geological Survey, and the Bureau of Mines. Furman served as the principal water policy adviser to three secretaries of the Interior. Prior to joining the Reagan administration, Furman served as legislative counsel to US Senator Paul Laxalt of Nevada and was a practicing attorney in Reno, Nevada.

In 1994, Furman was a candidate for the US Senate in Nevada. He captured the Republican nomination but was narrowly defeated in the general election by the incumbent US senator.

Following the 2000 elections, Furman served as member of the Department of the Interior transition team for President-Elect George W. Bush. Furman currently serves on the Board of Trustees of the Hubbs-Seaworld Research Institute, an internationally recognized marine research institution.

Furman graduated from the University of Southern California and earned a juris doctor degree from the University of Southern California Law Center.

Tom Gorman

Director

Read Bio

Tom Gorman

Director

Tom Gorman is the Chairman and Editor-in-chief Emeritus of CCI Asia-Pacific Ltd. and Fortune China. A fluent Chinese speaker, he has written and spoken extensively on doing business in China and the Asia-Pacific region and has been a guest commentator on many television and radio programs. He has consulted on business strategy in China to various Fortune 500 companies.

Gorman serves in leadership positions in several professional and charitable organizations. In addition to being a director of Dui Hua, he is a trustee of the Amcham Hong Kong Charitable Foundation and a member of The Nature Conservancy’s Asia-Pacific Council, and the Advisory Committee of International Social Service Hong Kong Branch. Gorman is a past chairman of the American Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong and former board chair of the Hong Kong International School.

In addition, Gorman is a member of the National Committee on US–China Relations, Vision 2047, and the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Hong Kong.

A native of Chicago, Illinois and graduate of Princeton University’s East Asian Studies Department, Gorman has been a Hong Kong resident and frequent visitor to China for more than 40 years.

William C. McCahill, Jr.

Director

Read Bio

William C. McCahill, Jr.

Director

Bill McCahill is a Senior Resident Fellow at the National Bureau of Asian Research in Seattle. He joined NBR in November 2016, focusing on Chinese domestic politics and policies, and on how those affect foreign investors and businesses in China. His professional experience in China dates from 1976.

Before joining NBR, McCahill had been Senior Advisor for China at Mirabaud & Cie., a Geneva-based Swiss private bank. Working from Hong Kong and Suzhou, McCahill advised Mirabaud’s equities traders, capital markets and private banking teams, and their clients. From 2012 through 2014, McCahill had done similar work with the emerging markets investment bank Religare Capital Markets. He had previously co-founded and managed a China-focused equities and macro-economic research firm, opened the Beijing office of a major American law firm, and operated a business consultancy in China.

A 25-year Foreign Service career preceded McCahill’s China business activities. He began his diplomatic service in Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Beijing; subsequently held senior posts at U.S. missions in Western Europe, Scandinavia, and Canada; and in 2000 retired from his last posting as Chargé d’affaires at the American Embassy in Beijing.

His academic credentials include undergraduate and graduate degrees from Boston College and Harvard University in Theology, English, the History of Religion, and Sanskrit & Indian Studies.

Michael T. McCune

Director

Read Bio

Michael T. McCune

Director

A student of Chinese language while at the University of Michigan, McCune launched his career in Shanghai where he promoted US exports for the US Department of Commerce. He later co-founded a retail research firm on the China market, and a decade later moved to Tokyo to help launch a consumer research business.

Since returning to the US in 2004, his work has focused on engagements involving marketing strategy, customer experience, and shopper behavior. He currently serves as a Senior Executive Advisor at Gartner.

In addition to serving on Dui Hua’s Board, McCune is a member of the National Committee on US-China Relations.

William Simon

Director

Read Bio

William Simon

Director

William Simon is the Managing Partner of Kura Holdings LLC, a private equity company. Previously he served as the Executive Vice Chairman of Cole Haan LLC and as Managing Partner of Infinity Associates LLC, a business that specialized in acquiring, operating, and nurturing global companies, including those with strong ties to private and governmental entities in China. Over the years, Simon has held the positions of Chairman and/or CEO of more than 20 companies, including The North Face and Converse.

Simon began his involvement with China while attending a trade fair in Shanghai in 1976, where he first met John Kamm. After moving to Hong Kong in 1978, he established a manufacturing enterprise that eventually opened branch offices in nine provinces in China to oversee production of high-end outdoor and apparel products. Other accomplishments include the establishment of one of the first compensation trade agreements between a foreign and Chinese company; acting on behalf of the Chinese Government to obtain licenses to export certain products to the US prior to the establishment of diplomatic relations; and testimony before US Senate and House hearings on China’s Most Favored Nation status.

Simon was born and raised in Michigan and received a BA degree in English Literature from the University of California at Berkeley. After working in Hong Kong and China for 15 years, he returned to San Francisco where he currently resides. Having a strong desire to help improve relations between American and Chinese citizens, Simon has been an active advocate and supporter of John Kamm since 1990 and Director of Dui Hua since its founding.

Magdalen Yum

Director

Read Bio

Magdalen Yum

Director

Magdalen Yum is a wealth management banker by profession. Having begun her banking career in Hong Kong, Yum immigrated to the San Francisco Bay Area in 1990 and has since developed expertise in US and Asian markets.

Yum attended Hong Kong’s Maryknoll Sisters School for both her primary and secondary education and graduated in Business Management from Ateneo de Manila University in the Philippines. Born and raised in Hong Kong, Yum has always had a special concern for the development of rule of law and juvenile justice in China. She has been a supporter of Dui Hua since its founding.

Linda K. Ziglar

Director

Read Bio

Linda K. Ziglar

Director

Linda Ziglar brings financial and nonprofit experience to Dui Hua’s Board of Directors and serves on the Audit Committee. She retired as senior vice president for finance at the American Frozen Food Institute and as executive director of the Frozen Food Foundation. Prior to joining the institute, Ziglar ran LKL Consultants, an IT services company specializing in software development, network design and implementation, and legal support services for class action lawsuits. Her client list included Fortune 100 companies.

In addition to Dui Hua, Ziglar serves as Chairman of the Cyprus Friendship Program, an organization dedicated to resolving the conflict in Cyprus by developing bridges among future leaders and their families. She is currently an active member of the Board of Trustees of Lost Tree Village Chapel and the Order of St. John.

She received a BA in Mathematics and did graduate work in Operations Research at George Washington University.

John Kamm

Founder, Chairman

Read Bio

John Kamm

Founder, Chairman

John Kamm is an American businessman and human rights campaigner active in China since 1972. He is the founder and chairman of The Dui Hua Foundation. Kamm was awarded the Department of Commerce’s Best Global Practices Award by President Bill Clinton in 1997 and the Eleanor Roosevelt Award for Human Rights by President George W. Bush in 2001. In September 2004, Kamm received a MacArthur Fellowship for “designing and implementing an original approach to freeing prisoners of conscience in China.” Kamm is the first businessman to be awarded a MacArthur Fellowship.

Since his first intervention on behalf of a Chinese prisoner in May 1990, Kamm has made more than 100 trips to China to engage the government in a dialogue on human rights, focusing on the treatment of prisoners and conditions in prisons. He has made 10 visits to Chinese prisons and has submitted requests for information on more than 1,000 prisoners. In the words of The New York Times, “No other person or organization in the world, including the State Department, has helped more Chinese prisoners.”

Kamm received a BA from Princeton University (1972) and an MA from Harvard University (1975). He was the Hong Kong correspondent and representative of the National Council for US-China Trade (1975-1979) and President of the American Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong (1990). He also managed Occidental Chemical Corporation’s business in China and the Far East (1986-1991).

Irene Chan Kamm

Chief Operating Officer

Read Bio

Irene Chan Kamm

Chief Operating Officer

Irene Chan Kamm was on Dui Hua’s founding team. She earned a BA in Sociology from the Chinese University of Hong Kong and a Master of Social Science in Economics from the University of Hong Kong. Initially employed as a government statistician and economist, she later joined the business sector managing the research department of an international consulting firm and overseeing finance and administration at Diamond Shamrock China and Diamond Shamrock Far East. Irene oversees Dui Hua’s programs, human resources, finance, and development, and works with the Board of Directors to formulate strategies and plans for program and organization sustainability.

Kevin Li

Senior Manager of Research & Database

Read Bio

Kevin Li

Senior Manager of Research & Database

Kevin Li was born in Shanghai and immigrated to the United States after graduating from high school. Kevin holds a B.S. in Computer Science from San Francisco State University and is a Certified Microsoft Professional. Kevin has been with Dui Hua since the foundation was established in 1999. Kevin oversees the foundation’s research as well as its databases.

Luke Wong

Research Manager

Read Bio

Luke Wong

Research Manager

Luke Wong joined Dui Hua in October 2008. He is a native of Hong Kong and a graduate of the University of Hong Kong with a B.A. in History and European Studies and a M. Phil in History with a concentration in race and class relations in colonial Hong Kong. Luke focuses his research on China’s political and religious prisoners and women in prison in China. Along with managing Hong Kong office administration, he also oversees and maintains Dui Hua’s Political Prisoner Database and Mass Incident Database.

Ren-Yin Yu

Programs & Development Manager

Read Bio

Ren-Yin Yu

Programs & Development Manager

Ren Yin Yu graduated from University of California, Berkeley with a B.A. in Interdisciplinary Field Studies (focus on NGO sector in China) and a B.A. in Legal Studies. Ren Yin lived in Taiwan and mainland China and is bilingual in Mandarin and English. Before joining Dui Hua, RenYin worked in UC Berkeley as Development Associate and Project/Policy Analyst for the Vice Chancellor’s Office for Undergraduate Education.

Xandra Xiao

Programs & Publications Officer

Read Bio

Xandra Xiao

Programs & Publications Officer

Xandra Xiao was born in the US and grew up in Hong Kong, Shanghai and Beijing. She holds a BA in History from University College London, with a focus on modern Chinese history as well as a Msc in Contemporary Chinese Studies from the University of Oxford, with a focus on Chinese law. She speaks English and Mandarin. She coordinates foundation’s publication and program activities and provides support to research, development and outreach activities.

Ricky Hui

Research Associate

Read Bio

Ricky Hui

Research Associate

Ricky graduated from Hong Kong Baptist University, majoring in Government and International Studies and minoring in History. He is in charge of updating Dui Hua’s Political Prisoner Database and Death Penalty Log.

Before joining Dui Hua in August 2014, he interned at InMedia (HK) as a trainee reporter. His research interests span from security studies to Hong Kong’s democratization.

Amanda Lin

Development & Operations Associate

Read Bio

Amanda Lin

Development & Operations Associate

Amanda Lin graduated from the School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University with a Master of International Affairs. She concentrated in Humanitarian and Human Rights Policy and specialized in Management. Before joining Dui Hua, she spent time in Taiwan teaching English and bringing awareness to modern-day slavery in South-East Asia.

Eveline Chan

Accountant

Read Bio

Eveline Chan

Accountant

Eveline Chan grew up in Hong Kong and worked in Dui Hua’s Hong Kong branch as research intern in 2014. Upon graduating from Cornell University in 2017, she joined Dui Hua’s San Francisco team as accounting and finance intern. During her internship, Eveline completed the QuickBooks Desktop ProAdvisor course and coordinated Dui Hua’s external audit. In April 2018, she was promoted to the position of Accountant, assisting the Chief Operating Officer in day-to-day accounting activities and financial analysis.

Chloe Chui

Research Assistant

Read Bio

Chloe Chui

Research Assistant

Chloe Chui graduated from the Chinese University of Hong Kong with a B.A. in English, focusing on English Renaissance literature. Before joining Dui Hua’s Hong Kong office, Chloe was involved in showcasing ethnic minority youths’ art work through student groups on campus.

As Research Assistant, Chloe monitors and tracks cases involving political and religious prisoners as well as those facing the death penalty for Dui Hua’s Political Prisoner Database and its Death Penalty Log. She is bilingual in Chinese and English.

Annual Reports

Dui Hua is a nonprofit, nongovernmental organization supported by contributions from private individuals, foundations, corporations, and government grants worldwide. Programmatic and financial reports demonstrate our work and responsible stewardship of funds.

2017 Annual Report
English Chinese 中文
2016 Annual Report
English Chinese 中文

Testimonials

Bill Clinton

Former US President

"I am particularly moved by your concern about those imprisoned activists who are not prominent. I applaud your efforts, both for the principles your work embodies and the lives you have affected."

Tina Rosenberg

The New York Times Magazine

“No other person or organization in the world … has helped more Chinese prisoners.”

Sun Yunxi

Former Chinese Ambassador to Italy

“Dui Hua has had great success in the field of international human rights … developing close cooperation with the Chinese government … and establishing open channels of communication.”

Kristoffer Ronneberg

Aftenposten

“The one organization which has achieved the most in the human rights field in China.”

Xu Zerong

Scholar and freed political prisoner

“With American attention, prison conditions improved, and all prisoners benefited.”