David Adelman

David I. Adelman

Ambassador Adelman is a partner in the New York office of Reed Smith LLP who also frequently works out of Reed Smith’s offices in Hong Kong and Singapore.  David represents financial institutions in regulatory matters and advises clients on trans-Pacific trade and investment issues.

David served as the 15th United States Ambassador to Singapore, concluding his term in 2013. During his term as U.S. Ambassador, David led eight trade missions to India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar and Vietnam. His 2012 trade mission to Nepyidaw was the first American business delegation to the capital of Myanmar.

He launched the U.S.-Singapore Strategic Partnership Dialogue and established a Third Country Training Program to address health, educational and environmental issues in South East Asia. David was awarded the U.S. State Department Superior Honor Award for his diplomatic leadership. Also during his tenure, the United States and Singapore jointly agreed for the first time to the forward deployment of U.S. Navy vessels to Singapore. His work earned David the United States Navy Distinguished Public Service Award, the highest award granted by the U.S. Navy to non-military personnel.

Subsequent to his service as a diplomat, David served as a member of the Monetary Authority of Singapore’s Capital Markets Committee and the Executive Board of the Hong Kong Treasury Markets Association. He also served as a member of the Board of Governors of the American Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong. David is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and teaches international relations at New York University. He serves on the Southeast Asia Advisory Board of the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

David was an instructor in the Honors Program at the University of Georgia, where he earned his bachelor’s degree. David received his J.D. from Emory University and a master’s from Georgia State University. He is a frequent speaker on international affairs and infrastructure development.


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