Director - Health and Life Science
Gretchen Kunze joined the Council full-time in February 2023 as Director for the Health and Life Sciences portfolio. She also serves as the Executive Director of the US ICT Council for Myanmar, a sister organization of the US-ABC, where she has led government relations, policy engagement, and digital development programs in Myanmar since 2020 for Council member companies comprising seven of the world’s leading technology firms.
Gretchen has spent more than 19 years living and working in Asia and has over two decades of professional experience in international development, focused on governance and democracy building, economic development, and civic engagement. She was based in Yangon for five years previously (through May 2021) as World Learning’s Country Representative for Myanmar, where she led the Institute for Political and Civic Engagement at the U.S. Embassy’s American Center, and as the Country Director for Cardno Emerging Markets.
Prior to her time in Myanmar, Gretchen was the Asia Division Director in Washington, DC, and Resident Mongolia Country Representative in Ulaanbaatar for the International Republican Institute; and Country Representative for Laos, and Deputy Country Representative for Thailand and Laos for The Asia Foundation. She has written numerous articles on Asian political and economic affairs and authored the chapter on Laos for the Routledge Handbook on Civil Society in Asia. Gretchen has fulfilled short-term senior management and proposal development assignments in Afghanistan, Cambodia, North Macedonia and the Philippines, and spent three years teaching in Japan with the Ministry of Education’s JET Programme. She has an MA from the Korbel School for International Studies at the University of Denver, and a BA in Political Science from Villanova University.