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Richard LeBaron, Former U.S. Ambassador, to Deliver U-Idaho’s Distinguished Visiting Practitioners of International Affairs Lecture

Tuesday, January 22 2013

MOSCOW, Idaho – In its ongoing effort to educate and inform students and the public about international issues with profound, immediate and long-term impacts, the University of Idaho’s Martin Institute has established the Visiting Distinguished Practitioners of International Affairs lecturer series.

Richard LeBaron, former U.S. diplomat and the 2013 Visiting Distinguished Practitioner of International Affairs will present at the Martin Forum on Wednesday, Jan. 30, at 5:30 p.m. His address, titled “United States Foreign Policy for the Future: Confident Leader or Superpower in Decline," is free and open to the public in the Administration Building Auditorium, 851 Campus Dr. in Moscow.

LeBaron retired from the State Department in April 2012 after serving as a U.S. diplomat for more than 30 years. He is a Visiting Senior Fellow at the Rafik Hariri Center of the Atlantic Council, in Washington, D.C.

“The opportunity for our students and the community to have such in-depth involvement with a top diplomat is remarkable” said Bill Smith, director of the Martin Institute and Program in International Studies. “Having a practitioner’s insight into the U.S. role in global discourse will benefit everyone.”

A former U.S. Ambassador, LeBaron will also deliver a guest speech at the Renfrew Colloquium Series on “Measuring Risks and Opportunities in Foreign Policy – How Do We Decide What Matters Going Forward?” on Tuesday, Jan. 29 at 12:30 p.m. in the Idaho Commons Building Whitewater room, 875 S. Line St. in Moscow. This event is free and open to the public.

Visiting Distinguished Practitioners of International Affairs events provide a forum for experts to share their insights, and a unique opportunity for the public to engage in meaningful, face-to-face dialogue with them.

In addition to LeBaron's public events, the Visiting Distinguished Practitioner of International Affairs schedule of events include: a luncheon with the university's International Law Student Association; a lunch and informal conversation with officer cadres from Air Force, Army, and Navy ROTC detachments; a meeting with U.S. and Saudi students about the role of social media in Saudi Arabia; a meeting with the junior and senior classes of Gar-Pal High School; and a seminar with two groups of freshmen in international studies, designed to help new students understand their academic emphasis choices, including international relations, international development and international economics.

During the course of his visit, LeBaron will also hold office hours at the Martin Institute for individual students potentially interested in careers in international affairs. His visit is jointly sponsored by the University of Idaho’s Martin Institute and the Program in International Studies.

LeBaron’s early overseas diplomatic postings included Managua, New Delhi, Tunis and Lisbon. He held a position as the political officer in the State Department’s Office of European Community Affairs. He later served as director for Near East and South Asian Affairs at the National Security Council, director of the Peace Process and Regional Affairs Office in the Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs at the Department of State, and Public Affairs Adviser for the Near Eastern Bureau.

He held positions as Minister-Counselor for Political Economic Affairs at the Embassy of the United States in Cairo, Egypt and Deputy Chief of Mission at the Embassy of the United States in Tel Aviv, Israel. He served as the U.S. Ambassador to Kuwait from 2004-2007.

He then took post in London, England first as Deputy Chief of Mission at the United States Embassy in London and later as Chargé d’Affaires. In his final position before retiring, he served as the coordinator of the Center for Strategic Counterterrorism Communications.

For more information, call (208) 885-6527.
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About the University of Idaho
Founded in 1889, the University of Idaho is the state’s flagship higher-education institution and its principal graduate education and research university, bringing insight and innovation to the state, the nation and the world. University researchers attract nearly $100 million in research grants and contracts each year; the University of Idaho is the only institution in the state to earn the prestigious Carnegie Foundation ranking for high research activity. The university’s student population includes first-generation college students and ethnically diverse scholars. Offering more than 130 degree options in 10 colleges, the university combines the strengths of a large university with the intimacy of small learning communities. For information, visit

About the University of Idaho
The University of Idaho helps students to succeed and become leaders. Its land-grant mission furthers innovative scholarly and creative research to grow Idaho's economy and serve a statewide community. From its main campus in Moscow, Idaho, to 70 research and academic locations statewide, U-Idaho emphasizes real-world application as part of its student experience. U-Idaho combines the strength of a large university with the intimacy of small learning communities. It is home to the Vandals. For information, visit