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Samantha Power‏
Ambassador • Global Thinker & Activist
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Samantha Power‏
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Ambassador Samantha Power has been called the “conscience” of U.S. foreign policy. A leading voice internationally for principled American engagement in the world, global cooperation, and human rights, she has a unique perspective – spending half of her career explaining complex geopolitical events as a Pulitzer Prize-winning author, war correspondent, and Harvard professor, and the last eight years helping to shape them. The youngest-ever U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, she was also a member of President Obama’s Cabinet and a senior adviser at the White House.

At the U.N., Ambassador Power played a significant role in standing up to Russian aggression, securing the release of political prisoners, and helping mobilize global responses to the North Korean nuclear threat, the massive refugee crisis, and the rise of ISIL.

Called by Forbes “a powerful crusader for U.S foreign policy as well as human rights and democracy,” Ambassador Power has been named one of Foreign Policy’s “Top 100 Global Thinkersand TIME magazine’s “100 Most Influential People.

Before joining the U.S. government, Ambassador Power was the Anna Lindh Professor of the Practice of Global Leadership and Public Policy at Harvard University’s Kennedy School. She was also the founding executive director of the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy.

Her book, “A Problem From Hell:” America and the Age of Genocide won the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award in 2003. The New Republic praised it as “Nothing less than a masterwork of contemporary journalism…An angry, brilliant, fiercely useful, absolutely essential book.” She also wrote the New York Times bestseller Chasing the Flame: Sergio Vieira de Mello and the Fight to Save the World (2008), the basis for the award-winning HBO documentary, “Sergio,” and was the co-editor of The Unquiet American: Richard Holbrooke in the World (2011).

Ambassador Power began her career as a journalist, reporting from places such as Bosnia, East Timor, Kosovo, Rwanda, Sudan, and Zimbabwe; she was a columnist for TIME and has contributed regularly to The New Yorker, The New York Review of Books, and The Atlantic, which published her National Magazine Award-winning article, “Bystanders to Genocide.” 

At the age of nine, she immigrated to the United States from Ireland. After attending high school in Atlanta, Georgia, she received a B.A. from Yale University and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. She is married to Harvard Law Professor Cass Sunstein, with whom she has two young children, 7 and 4, making multi-tasking a central feature of her years at the U.N.

Full Bio >
Videos
  • Diplomacy, Motherhood, and the 24-7 Job 'of a Lifetime'
  • 'Are you truly incapable of shame?' Russia and Assad in Aleppo
  • Yale Commencement: Making Real Change (2016)
  • Power Explains the Whole World to Stephen Colbert
  • Samantha Power on Russia Threat: Farewell Address at the U.N. (2017)
  • The Global Refugee Crisis: Overcoming Fears and Spurring Action (2016)
  • National Security: Yemen and Iraq, Russian in Crimea, and the threat of ISIL
  • TED: A complicated hero in the war on dictatorship (2008)
Load More
Speaking Topics
The State of the World: Challenges & Opportunities
Why Human Rights Matter More Than Ever
Women, National Security, and the Juggle of a Lifetime
The New Diplomacy: Putting People First in the 21st Century
Leadership: Why it Matters
Fixing American Foreign Policy
How You Can Change Your Slice of the World 
Books & Other Works
  • "A Problem from Hell": America and the Age of Genocide
  • The Unquiet American: Richard Holbrook in the World
  • Chasing the Flame: Sergio Vieira de Mello and the Fight to Save the World
Testimonials
“One of our foremost thinkers on foreign policy, she showed us that the international community has a moral responsibility and a profound interest in resolving conflicts and defending human dignity. As a senior member of my national security team, she has been a relentless advocate for American interests and values, building partnerships on behalf of democracy and human rights, fighting the scourge of antisemitism and combatting human trafficking. To those who care deeply about America's engagement and indispensable leadership in the world, you will find no stronger advocate for that cause than Samantha.”
President Barack Obama
“She was a performer of the first order. No notes, the fingers and the arms always flashing in the air, and a voice going from a whisper to a shout. She was pure theatre.”
Leslie H. Gelb, Council of Foreign Relations
“There is no doubt about where Samantha stands with respect to our values. The oppressed, the displaced, those suffering offenses to human dignity know that they will have a passionate defending in Samantha...(she) understands the imperatives of policymaking, which are that one never has, or very rarely, an opportunity for a perfect answer; that one always has to adjust it, to some extent, to circumstance; and that one has to carry out ideals over a period of time, not in any one heroic effort. All of this she has done with enormous distinction and great charm.”
Henry A. Kissinger
“...one of the keepers of idealism in America...”
Leon Wieseltier, former literary editor of The New Republic
“She has been a powerful friend to the displaced and downtrodden and a foe of dictators and despots. She has seen how hard it is to compel the world to act, but she has never stopped defending the values America holds dear.”
Madeleine Albright, former U.S. Secretary of State
Keywords
Activism
Africa
Al-Qaeda
America
Arab Issues
Author
China
Commencement Speakers
Cyber Security
Democracy
Developing World
Diplomacy
Economics
Environment
Ethics
Europe
Food Shortage
Foreign Affairs
Free Trade
Freedom
Gender
Genocide
Geopolitics
Global Economy
Global Warming
Globalization
Government
Heroism
History
Human Rights
ISIS
Immigration
International Relations
Iran
Iraq
Islam
Israel
Journalism
Justice
Law
Leadership
Middle East
Morality
National Security
Non-Violence
North Korea
Nuclear Proliferation
Nuclear Weapons
Peace
Political Analysis
Politics
Power
Presidency
Pulitzer Prize
Refugee
Risk Taking
Russia
Security
TED
Terrorism
United Nations
War
Women
Work-Life Balance
Social Media