Bay Fang is President of Radio Free Asia (RFA), a publicly-funded private news organization with the mission of bringing free press to closed societies in Asia. She first joined RFA in 2015 as Managing Director for East Asia, before being appointed President in 2019. During Ms. Fang’s tenure, RFA broke the news about China’s extrajudicial detention of more than 1 million Uyghur people that led to the U.S. labeling China’s actions a genocide. RFA’s reporting has also been pivotal in crisis zones such as Burma, whose citizens have relied on RFA’s up-to-the-minute news and content as the military junta shut down local media. RFA recently celebrated its 25th anniversary, marking a quarter century of informing publics otherwise denied accurate and timely journalism.
Prior to her work with RFA, Fang garnered considerable expertise in Asia and the Middle East through her work as a foreign and war correspondent. She started her journalism career as Beijing Bureau Chief for US News and World Report, where she won The Robert F. Kennedy Award for Excellence in Journalism for her story “China’s Stolen Wives.” She began covering the war in Afghanistan in October 2001, as one of the first journalists on the ground with the Northern Alliance, and later became the Chief Iraq Correspondent for US News, during which time she was one of the first reporters to be allowed into the training camps of the PKK, an extremist Kurdish guerrilla group. In 2006 she returned to the US and became the Diplomatic Correspondent for The Chicago Tribune. She transitioned into government during the Obama Administration, serving as a Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for press and public diplomacy.
Ms. Fang earned her undergraduate degree at Harvard University, was a visiting fellow at Oxford University and a Fulbright scholar in Hong Kong. She trained as a French chef at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris and holds a brown belt in kung fu. She and her husband live in Washington, DC with their two small children. She can often be found on a Zoom call at her neighborhood playground.