UF English alumna Barbara J. Stephenson has been confirmed by the U.S. Senate as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the U.S. to the Republic of Panama

Above: Barbara J. Stephenson.

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English Alumna Named Ambassador to Panama

UF English alumna Barbara J. Stephenson has been confirmed by the U.S. Senate as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the U.S. to the Republic of Panama, following the nomination of President George W. Bush.

A career member of the Senior Foreign Service, Stephenson currently serves as Deputy Coordinator for Iraq at the Department of State. Prior to this, she served as a Principal Officer in Belfast and as a Political and Economic Officer in Panama. She holds a bachelor’s, master’s and Ph.D.—all in English—from the University of Florida.

 “When I started my diplomatic career—and I joined A-100, the name of the
entering class for new diplomats, the very next day after I defended my doctoral dissertation at the University of Florida—experienced, senior diplomats came in to talk to us about the dream of making ambassador one day, noting how few of us would make it,” said Stephenson. “I am deeply grateful to the President and the Secretary of State for the unforgettable honor of nominating me to be ambassador to Panama, a country I came to love during my first diplomatic assignment 20 years ago.”

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Buffy Lockette

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