Chiling Tong has extensive domestic and international experience in economic and business development, focused on enhancing the growth of minority-owned small businesses. Tong’s career spans the private, nonprofit, and public sectors. She is the President and CEO of the National Asian & Pacific Islander American Chamber of Commerce & Entrepreneurship (National ACE) representing the interests of 2.65 million Asian American & Pacific Islanders (AAPI) small business owners and entrepreneurs. National ACE collaborates with over 120 affiliate AAPI chambers and partner organizations across the country to advocate for AAPI small businesses, enhance capacity building, and foster the next generation of AAPI entrepreneurs and executives.
Tong is also the Founding President of the International Leadership Foundation (ILF), a nonprofit organization promoting civic awareness and public service for AAPI college students since 2000. The ILF has over twenty active chapters nationwide. She served as the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the International Trade Administration and was subsequently the Chief of Staff and Associate Director for Minority Business Development Agency in the U.S. Department of Commerce. She was appointed as a member of the President’s Advisory Commission on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders and was also a member of the National Advisory Council on Minority Business Enterprises at the U.S. Department of Commerce. Currently, Tong is a member of the Treasury Advisory Committee on Racial Equity, Director of the Congressional Awards for young leaders, the Census Bureau National Advisory Committee on Racial, Ethnic, and Other Populations, and the Small Business Administration’s Council on Underserved Communities. She was also recently named commissioner to study to the potential creation of a National Museum of APA History and Culture.
Tong was an Ash Center Research fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School. Previously, Tong worked to promote California’s economic development, trade, and employment services. She was the Director of California’s Office of Trade and Investment in Taipei, Taiwan, and served as Assistant Secretary for International Trade in the California Trade and Commerce Agency. Tong has worked for the California State Senate Minority Leader’s Office as the Chief Asian American Affairs Advisor. Tong was awarded a Coro Public Affairs Fellowship and was the Chairperson of the Los Angeles County Community Action Board. Tong was also a television anchor and reporter for China TV, a Los Angeles-based international television station. In 2017, Chiling Tong was named Advocate of the Year by the Minority Business Development Agency due to her significant contribution to minority business development.