James Chau is a broadcaster, writer and UN Goodwill Ambassador.
In March 2015 he was named Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum in recognition of his work in media, and in the fight against HIV and AIDS. He has interviewed global personalities, including Winnie Mandela, Robert Mugabe, Aung Sang Suu Kyi, Muhammad Yunus, Paul Kagame, Arianna Huffington, Diane von Furstenberg, and Chinese First Lady Peng Liyuan. Most recently, he was the first international journalist to speak exclusively to Indonesian President Joko Widodo.
He is a former Guest Presenter on BBC World, appearing on the award-winning show Horizons. Currently, he is Special Contributor to China Central Television, after ten years as its main anchor with an audience of 85 million. Most recently he covered the Ebola outbreak, and the crash of AirAsia Flight 8501—also fronting special coverage on the deaths of Nelson Mandela, Margaret Thatcher, and Hugo Chavez. In March 2014, he broke the headline story from Kuala Lumpur that revealed the last words spoken by the pilots on Flight MH370.
In 2009, he was the first person in China to be appointed UNAIDS Goodwill Ambassador, with a focus on youth, women, and injecting drug users. In March 2015, he co-hosted the National AIDS/TB Prevention Campaign at Hainan University attended by Bill Gates, and Chinese First Lady Peng Liyuan. He also hosted the Opening Ceremony of the 2014 International AIDS Conference in Melbourne, which turned into a tribute to the researchers and activists killed days before on Flight MH17. He has collaborated with Annie Lennox, Michele Bachelet, and Françoise Barré-Sinoussi whose co-discovery of HIV won her the 2008 Nobel Prize.
He is Advisor to the World Health Organisation in Beijing, Trustee of the Menuhin Violin Competition, and Charity Ambassador for Shangri-la Hotels and Resorts. Born in London, he studied piano at the Royal Academy of Music, and graduated from the University of Cambridge, where The John C.B. Chau Prize in Engineering is named for his father. He lives in Beijing, where he is writing a book of conversations with global leaders.
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