Melanne Verveer, U. S. Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women's Issues, spoke as part of the spring 2011 President's Forum. Verveer has served the nation since April 2009 when she was appointed by President Barack Obama.
As director of the Department of State's Global Women's Issues office, Verveer coordinates activities and foreign policy issues concerning the economic, social, and political advancement of women around the world. As part of her duties, Verveer organizes initiatives and programs designed to promote empowerment, support women's rights, and combat violence against women and girls. Verveer is responsible for ensuring that women's rights are fully incorporated in all U.S. foreign policy.
Before stepping into the role of U.S. Ambassador, Verveer served as chair and chief executive officer of Vital Voices, a nonprofit organization she co-founded that works to expand the roles of women in politics and as leaders. Vital Voices works to safeguard human rights. Verveer was an integral member of the Clinton administration, serving as Assistant to the President and Chief of Staff to the First Lady. During Hillary Clinton's efforts to advance the rights of women and promote social development, Verveer was chief assistant to Clinton.
Verveer has a B.A. and M.A. from Georgetown University. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, Women's Foreign Policy Group, and numerous other organizations.