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Richard Benedick elected to the American Academy of Diplomacy

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July 12, 2002 Share This!

RICHLAND, Wash. — Pacific Northwest National Laboratory global change policy analyst Richard Elliot Benedick has been elected to the American Academy of Diplomacy.

The academy is an association of 100 former cabinet secretaries, ambassadors and statesmen who have made considerable contributions to American foreign policy.

Ambassador Benedick is the only academy member to have been elected for his work in the environment and science fields rather than traditional foreign policy. He currently is based at the lab's Joint Global Change Research Institute at the University of Maryland in College Park.

The non-profit, non-partisan organization considers diplomacy an indispensable aspect in the promotion of American interests. The academy focuses on programs designed to improve the quality of U.S. diplomacy and to build greater public understanding of its importance in the foreign policy process. Vacancies are filled by annual elections among members.

Benedick has played a major role in global environmental affairs. He was chief US negotiator and a principal architect of the historic Montreal Protocol on protection of the Earth's ozone layer. He also served as special advisor to secretaries-general at both the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in Rio de Janeiro in 1992 and the International Conference on Population and Development in Cairo in 1994. He is the author of the award-winning book "Ozone Diplomacy" published by Harvard University Press in 1998, and many other publications on environment, development and science policy.

A career diplomat, Benedick served in Iran; Pakistan; Paris, France; Bonn, Germany; and Athens, Greece. As deputy assistant secretary of state for environment, health and natural resources, he supervised policy formation and international negotiations on climate change, stratospheric ozone, biotechnology, tropical forests, oceans, wildlife conservation and AIDS. He previously headed policy divisions at the US State Department and was responsible for population policies and research, and economic assistance and multilateral finance. In addition to being selected for the Senior Seminar, the US government's highest study program, Benedick also led many international delegations and testified before the US Congress and foreign parliaments. Among numerous honors, he received the two highest career public service awards, the Presidential Distinguished and Meritorious Service Awards.

Among members of the American Academy of Diplomacy are former Secretaries of State George Shultz, James Baker, Henry Kissinger, Madeline Albright, Alexander Haig and current Secretary Colin Powell; former Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara and current Secretary Donald Rumsfeld; and statesmen such as Walter Mondale, Sam Nunn, Thomas Pickering and Dennis Ross.

Founded two decades ago by John J. McCloy and Ambassadors Ellsworth Bunker and U. Alexis Johnson, the academy continues with the aims of fostering high standards in the conduct of diplomacy and increasing public awareness. Current academy activities include ongoing panels on the tasks confronting diplomacy-including studies on information technology, and building and maintaining international coalitions-public programs, publications and awards.

Tags: Environment, Fundamental Science, Climate Science

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