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NEWS & IDEAS

#ThrowBackThursday: Madeleine Albright

Today's Throwback Thursday belongs to the first female U.S. Secretary of State, Madeleine Albright! It's also her birthday! Albright turns 77 today.

Born in prewar Prague, Albright’s earliest years were defined by her family’s political flight—first from Hitler and, after 1948, from Czechoslovakia’s Communist government. Albright was a Wellesley alumna, a naturalized citizen, and had worked as a journalist by the time she became a mother for the first time in 1960. She spent the next 30 years simultaneously raising three daughters, obtaining graduate degrees and ascending to distinguished positions in the academic, political and foreign policy establishments.

She served as Ambassador to the UN for President Clinton’s first term and was appointed Secretary of State at the start of his second term, thereby becoming the highest-ranking woman in the history of the U.S. government, and more often than not, the only woman in the room.