News and Media – 2016

Exelon Highlights Maryland Sister State & Baltimore Sister Cities Programs

November 16th, 2016

Exelon Corporation‘s Asian American Resource Group hosted representatives from the Maryland Sister State and Baltimore Sister Cities programs at a two-hour event to explain the sister state/city programs to Exelon’s employees. Atsuko Biars, Chair of the Baltimore-Kawasaki Committee, and Fontaine Bell, Chair of the Baltimore-Xiamen Committee, presented to a group of about 50 Exelon employees. Both committees also served Asian food and drink to the attendees. Other presenters included representatives from the state’s China, Japan, Korea and Vietnam sister state committees. This program was an important part of Exelon’s annual Diversity & Inclusion Week.

10th Annual National Committee on U.S.-China Relations CHINA Town Hall: Local Connections, National Reflections


Dr. Henry A. Kissinger, former Secretary of State (1973 – 1977) and National Security Advisor (1969 – 1975)


Dr. David M. Lampton, Hyman Professor and Director, China Studies Program, the Johns Hopkins Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (1997 – present) and former President of the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations (1988 – 1997)

and moderated by

Mr. Stephen A. Orlins, President, National Committee on U.S.-China Relations

5:30 to 9:00pm, Tuesday, October 18th, 2016

Baltimore City Hall, 100 North Holliday Street, Baltimore, MD 21202

The 2016 program included a catered reception, a local address & discussion, “Where Is the U.S.-China Relationship Headed — Why?” by Dr. Lampton in person, and a nationwide webcast featuring Dr. Kissinger. Check-in & refreshments began at 5:30pm. The national webcast was from 7:00 to 8:00pm.

To register, visit the event registration page which contains a link for credit card payments. Checks in advance are to be made out to “Baltimore Sister Cities, Inc.” Registration fees are $20 for students & members and $30 for non-members if paid by October 11th, 2016. For payments & registrations after that date, a $10 surcharge will be assessed. All guests must register in advance in order to be allowed entry to City Hall. Refunds are not be available. Seating is limited.

This event sold out.

For more information regarding our national and local speakers, please follow the hyperlinks above. For a printer-friendly summary of the information above, please view the event flyer.

This event was sponsored at the Silver level by Active Minerals International, LLC, BRIC LLC, Ekpac China Inc., and TradeRiver USA and at the Bronze level by Exelon Asian American Resource Group (AARG).

View media from the event via Facebook. View China Daily’s report on the event on their website.

An Evening Romancing the River with MCBC and the Chinese Embassy

6:30 to 9:00pm, August 10th, 2016

The BXSCC joined the Maryland-China Business Council (MCBC) and our friends from the Chinese Embassy for a sunset cruise and dinner on the scenic Potomac River, passing along the picturesque Washington, D.C. waterfront, glowing monuments, the stately Lee-Curtis Mansion, and the charm of Georgetown.

Registration was available at

Xiamen Students Visit Baltimore City Hall

July 26th, 2016

Eleven middle school and high school students from Xiamen visited Baltimore City Hall on the morning of July 26th. The students were from a number of different schools in Xiamen and were attending an English language immersion program at McDonogh School in Baltimore County. They were greeted at City Hall by Claudia Freeland Jolin, Special Assistant in the Mayor’s Office of Economic & Neighborhood Development, and Fontaine Bell, Chairman of the Baltimore-Xiamen Sister City Committee. They were given a briefing on Baltimore City and a special tour of City Hall by the building’s Curator, Jeanne Davis.

Baltimore Sister Cities Exhibit at Artscape 2016!

July 15th through 17th, 2016

A big thank you to all our supporters who volunteered at or visited the Baltimore Sister Cities booth during Artscape!

The BXSCC’s fellow sister city committees were your hosts Friday & Saturday, during which all 500 of our BSC, Inc.-branded fans found new homes with festival-goers. The BXSCC – including Xiamen watercolor artist Ms. Lifen Weng – showed off our artistic chops on Sunday the 17th.

See the Baltimore Sister Cities announcement and the festival website for more information.

View photos from the event via Facebook.

Baltimore Sister Cities Wins Innovation Award

June 29th, 2016

Baltimore Sister Cities has been awarded Sister Cities International’s 2016 Innovation Award for Economic Development! The BXSCC received special mention for our 30th anniversary delegation and its promotion of business development and education exchanges.

See the Baltimore Sister Cities announcement and the Sister Cities International press release for more information.

2016 Baltimore-Xiamen Chinese Language Awards

May 2016

At the end of each school year, the Baltimore-Xiamen Sister City Committee recognizes students in Baltimore City Public Schools who have excelled in learning Chinese as a foreign language. This year, Dr. Jiya Zhong of the Baltimore Polytechnic Institute and Ms. Lifen Weng of Baltimore Design School each selected four of their students to be honored by our committee. Each student received a certificate and a gift card. Students honored were Kayla Brown, Ronald Jackson, Abigail McKenna, and Ezra Szanton of Baltimore Polytechnic Institute and Jonay Cunningham, Arjaai Fair, Donshay Johnson, and Tadeo Majarro of the Baltimore Design School. We congratulate and extend best wishes to each honoree!

View photos from the events via Facebook.

Baltimore Design School Students Travel to the Chinese Embassy and Chalin’s Restaurant

May 25th, 2016

Fourteen of Ms. Lifen Weng’s Chinese language learning students and four BXSCC members traveled to Washington, DC for a wonderful trip to the Chinese Embassy. The students, all 8th graders, learned about Chinese history through the magnificent artwork viewed in several key rooms and a lecture from a staff member. Upon leaving the embassy, the group left for a highly anticipated visit to Chalin’s Restaurant for lunch. Chalin’s is a highly-regarded Chinese restaurant in the Washington, DC area, and the students enjoyed their meal, which served as the coda to a new and exciting experience for the students.

View photos from the trip via Facebook.

Baltimore Orioles Mayor’s Sky Box Raffle

April 11th through May 15th, 2016

Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake kindly made the Mayor’s Skybox at Orioles Park at Camden Yards available for a raffle to benefit the Baltimore Sister Cities Program. This was for the Orioles/Tampa Bay Rays game on June 26th. The winner received 20 game tickets, 4 parking passes, and $400 in food and beverage credits; the corresponding flyer had more details.

The drawing was held as scheduled on May 22. A winner was picked and awarded prizes. Raffle proceeds totaled $5,380 (269 tickets at $20 each). These funds will be used to support our sister cities educational exchanges, cultural programs, and other activities. Contact Fontaine Bell ( or 410-440-6117) with any questions.

Dialogue with Delegation from Xiamen: China International Fair for Investment & Trade (CIFIT)

Friday, May 13th, 2016

It was 11am when more than the usual excitement began to stir at Baltimore City Hall. Curiosity abounded as the Xiamen delegation walked into the heart of Baltimore’s governmental system. Guests from Xiamen had come to Baltimore in person to invite our governing body as well as interested individuals and corporations to the 20th CIFIT event. This was the beginning of what became a very fruitful day.

Upon their arrival, the delegation was given a tour of City Hall. Many pictures were taken, smiles ensued, and overall enjoyment was had. Afterwards, Xiamen delegation representative Eric Chen met with Baltimore Deputy Mayor Colin Tarbert. Introductions were made, exchanges of ideas took place, and finally, the official written invitation was handed from Xiamen to Baltimore.

Following was a productive lunch where not only business was discussed but also exchanges of different experiences between Chinese and American life. It was a very lively table where the conversation ranged from business ideas to cultural differences in everyday life.

Finally, the delegation made their way to the Baltimore Development Corporation (BDC), where Xiamen informed American corporations about CIFIT. BDC President & CEO William H. Cole IV made opening remarks while both the delegation and BXSCC led the presentation. The meeting was very successful and, while BXSCC will not be able to attend the 2016 CIFIT, we will be more than happy to assist Baltimore and Maryland businesses in doing so should they decide to attend.

For more information about the 2016 CIFIT, please visit their website.

View photos from the event via Facebook.

Asian Pacific American Heritage Month Reception

6:30pm, Wednesday, May 11th, 2016

Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake invited the public to attend the 2016 Asian Pacific American Heritage Month Reception at Baltimore City Hall, 100 North Holliday Street, Baltimore, MD 21202. This free reception featured Asian cultural performances, cuisine samples from local Asian restaurants, and other activities. Pre-registration was required. The contact for additional information or questions was Danny Evans ( or 404-483-6848).

View photos from the event via Facebook.

BXSCC Announces 2016-2018 Leadership Team

March 10th, 2016

The BXSCC is pleased to welcome our leadership team for the 2016-2018 term! Continuing officers on our Executive Committee include Xin (Cindy) Wang and Arella Liu as Vice Chair and Treasurer, respectively. W. Fontaine Bell is now our Member-at-Large while serving as Acting Chair, and Kirsten Foster has been newly elected Secretary. Lisa (Weimin) Liu and Bob Zhang are now honorary Members-at-Large. For the latest information on our Sub-Committees and Functional Teams, please visit our Leadership page.

Port Discovery’s “Year of the Monkey” Chinese New Year Celebration Event

Saturday, February 6th, 2016

Excitement filled the air on February 6th at the Port Discovery Children’s Museum. The occasion was the annual Chinese New Year Celebration. Curious children visited the BXSCC Chinese New Year station and enjoyed creating various “Year of the Monkey” and other Chinese New Year-related art activities. Additionally, master calligrapher Mr. Jinrong Chen provided our guests with their own personalized bookmarks that were written in Chinese characters. The day was busy and very successful. The BXSCC looks forward to participating in the 2017 “Year of the Rooster” Chinese New Year celebration!

View photos from the event via Facebook.