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Madeleine Albright

Secretary of State Madeleine Albright
Order: 64th Sec'y of State
Term of Office: January 23, 1997 - January 20, 2001
Predecessor: Warren Christopher[?]
Sucessor: Colin Powell
Date of Birth: May 13, 1937
Place of Birth: Prague, Czechoslovakia
Spouse: Joseph Medill Patterson Albright[?]
Profession: Diplomat
Political Party: Democrat

Madeleine Korbel Albright (born 1937) is a former United States Secretary of State.

She was nominated by President Bill Clinton on December 5, 1996 as Secretary of State. After being unanimously confirmed by the United States Senate, she was sworn in as the 64th Secretary of State on January 23, 1997. Albright is the first female secretary of state and the highest ranking woman in the history of the U.S. government.

Prior to her appointment, Secretary Albright served as the United States Permanent Representative to the United Nations (presenting her credentials at the UN on February 6, 1993) and as a member of President Clinton's Cabinet, and the National Security Council. She was formerly the President of the Center for National Policy[?].

As a Research Professor of International Affairs and Director of Women in Foreign Service Program at Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service, she taught undergraduate and graduate courses in international affairs, U.S. foreign policy, Russian foreign policy, and Central and Eastern European politics, and was responsible for developing and implementing programs designed to enhance women's professional opportunities in international affairs.

From 1981 to 1982, Secretary Albright was awarded a fellowship at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars at the Smithsonian Institution following an international competition in which she wrote about the role of the press in political changes in Poland during the early 1980s.

She also served as a Senior Fellow in Soviet and Eastern European Affairs at the Center for Strategic and International Studies[?], conducting research in developments and trends in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe.

From 1978 - 1981, Albright was a staff member on the National Security Council, as well as a White House staff member, where she was responsible for foreign policy legislation. From 1976 -1978, she served as Chief Legislative Assistant to Senator Edmund Muskie[?].

Awarded a B.A. from Wellesley College with honors in Political Science, she studied at the School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University, received a Certificate from the Russian Institute at Columbia University, and her Masters and Doctorate from Columbia University's Department of Public Law and Government.

Albright is highly multilingual being fluent in English, French and Czech, with good speaking and reading abilities in Russian and Polish.

Before and during World War II her family sought refuge in Belgrade, Yugoslavia, where they had been on a diplomatic mission from Czechoslovakia. That saved her life, while many of her numerous Jewish relatives in Czechoslovakia were killed in the Holocaust. She is despised in Yugoslavia today because of her role in the Kosovo War.

We think the price is worth it. Albright became well-known for an interview on December 5, 1996, on the 60 Minutes television program. On the theme of US sanctions against Iraq, Lesley Stahl[?]'s words were:

We have heard that half a million children have died. I mean, that's more children than died in Hiroshima. And, you know, is the price worth it?

Albright replied:

I think this is a very hard choice, but the price - we think the price is worth it.

In 2000, Secretary Albright became the first western diplomat to meet Kim Jong Il, the reclusive leader of North Korea.

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