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Opening of the Gala Dinner for the US Ambassador
Château de Differdange, Miami European Center

mardi 31 mai 2011, par Thierry Leterre

Madam Ambassador,
Ladies and gentlemen, dear colleagues and students, dear friends,

We have this evening a very special guest for our Wednesday lecture, as we are happy and honored to welcome the most eminent representative of the United States in Luxembourg, Ambassador Cynthia Stroum. As is customary let me introduce our guest tonight.

Ambassador Stroum is the 20th Ambassador of the United States of America to the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. Following her nomination by President Obama and confirmation by the United States Senate she was sworn in her position last December.

She is a native of Seattle, Washington State. She has served and contributed to a wide variety of philanthropic causes, political campaigns and cultural interests, and has invested in various successful enterprises, including the Starbucks Coffee Company. In 2008, she co-produced the highly praised Broadway show “A Raisin in the Sun,” which was nominated for a Tony Award.

Ambassador Stroum illustrates the long standing tradition of American Philanthropy in the field of health, arts, and culture and she has been — you will pardon me, Madam Ambassador if I just mention only a few of your many achievements — Founding Chair and Board member of the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, Senior Council member and Board of Ambassadors for the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Trustee for her late father’s (Samuel Stroum) Trust, Washington State Arts Commissioner by appointment of the Governor, Board of Governors and Life Fellow of the Pacific Northwest Ballet.

A distinguished diplomat, Ambassador Stroum has also had an expansive businesswoman career as a private investor in such companies as Starbucks and Mosaix, Inc., as well as a commercial television producer and production coordinator for Lorimar Productions and Warner Brothers Studios in California. She was also a managing partner for Kobe Park Building/Nippon Kan Theatre, managing member of Stroum Enterprises, LLC, and managing member of Cynthia Stroum Productions LLC.

Ambassador Stroum has contributed to a number of national and statewide political campaigns and causes, including the Presidential Inaugural Committee, Obama for America, Governor Chris Gregoire re-election campaign, Senator Maria Cantwell executive finance committee and Senator Patty Murray advisory/executive finance committee.

Ambassador Stroum has been honored with various distinguished awards, including the Shining Star Award from the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network and the Woman of Valor Award for her work in health advocacy.

I could not conclude this too brief presentation of such a rich career without mentioning one more fact that is particularly dear to the heart of the political science professor and columnist I am : Ambassador Stroum, a graduate of the University of Southern California, earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Public Relations and Journalism.

Madam Ambassador,

It is also a fact dear to all our hearts that you honor our campus with your presence. We are, as you know, one of the most important American campuses in Europe by the number of students and academics from the US who study, teach and conduct research here in Luxembourg. Our center is named after John Dolibois, one of your predecessors at the US embassy of Luxembourg, where the residence of the ambassador also, has been named after him.

This is to say, Madam Ambassador, that we welcome you here as to a place where you rightly and naturally belong. This is why we felt we should do what we do in Europe and in the US when we have one of ours coming to visit : we organized a dinner.

This why also, I would like to ask everybody to join me in a deep heartfelt and thankful “Madam Ambassador, Welcome Home !”