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 PingY. Ping Sun
University Representative, Rice University

Of Counsel, Yetter Coleman, LLP


Y. Ping Sun came to Houston from New York City in 2004, when her husband David W. Leebron became Rice University's seventh president. A native of Shanghai, China, Ping attended Tianjin Foreign Languages School and Beijing Languages and Culture University. She received a full scholarship to Princeton University, where she graduated cum laude with an AB degree from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs.  She received a law degree from Columbia University School of Law, where she served as an editor of the Journal of Transnational Law.  After graduation, Ping practiced law in the New York offices of White & Case LLP and Sidley Austin Brown & Wood LLP, where her practice focused on corporate and cross border issues. In Houston, Ping is of counsel with the law firm of Yetter Coleman LLP, a boutique litigation firm in Houston.

As University Representative, Ping is fully engaged with the community both on and off campus.  At Rice, Ping has many roles. She serves as a member of the advisory board of Rice’s Shepherd School of Music and the Kinder Institute for Urban Research, and as honorary co-chair of Rice’s Baker Institute Roundtable.  She has been a mentor for many students and is a frequent participant in campus events. She also hosts a luncheon series called “Something New for Lunch at Rice University,” which brings Rice faculty members together with civic leaders and Houston community.

Ping is a trustee of Texas Children's Hospital and a board member of the Asia Society Texas Center, and the United Way of Greater Houston. She also serves on the advisory board of Asian Chamber of Commerce, Chinese Community Center, Houston Arts Alliance, and the chair of the Mayor’s International Trade and Development Council for Asia/Australia. Ping is also the vice chair of the Association of American Universities Partners’ Group which features top 62 American universities (including two from Canada). Ping is also an advisor of EastWest Bank and a director of Era Group Inc. Ping is a graduate of Center for Houston’s Future Leadership Forum and is invited frequently as a speaker or panelist in various leadership summits and conferences, such as the Youth Leadership Forum and HISD’s Asian-American College and Career Day.   

Ping’s community service has been recognized by several organizations. She and David were honored by Teach For America for their efforts to improve the educational opportunities for many students in low income schools, and they were named 2010 International Executives of the Year by the Greater Houston Partnership for their efforts to promote Houston and Rice University internationally. Ping was honored at a Hats Off to Mothers Luncheon and was a recipient of the Arrival Award given by the Immigration Clinic of University of Houston Law Center. She also had the honor to address more than 2,000 new citizens at their swearing-in ceremony in 2008. Recently, Ping received the Texas China Distinguished Leader in Education Award and the 2011 Asian American Leadership Award from Asia Society Texas Center, and she was named a Woman on the Move by Texas Executive Women, one of the 50 Most Influential Women by Houston Women Magazine, the 2012 ABC Channel 13 Woman of Distinction, the 2013 Ambassador of the Year by Asian Chamber of Commerce and the 2014 Spirit Award by Rice Athlectics. 

Ping and David have two children, Daniel, 17, and Merissa, 14.