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Walter and Leonore Annenberg Excellence in Diplomacy Award

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The Walter and Leonore Annenberg Award for Excellence in Diplomacy is an annual award given by the American Academy of Diplomacy in recognition of an individual or group who has made exemplary contributions to the field of American diplomacy. It is the Academy’s highest honor and its purpose is to highlight the important contribution of all aspects of diplomacy to the nation’s business.

The Award is presented at the Academy’s Annual Awards Luncheon at the State Department in the fall, during which the recipient acts as keynote speaker. Recipients of the Annenberg Award are recommended by the Academy’s Executive Committee and are approved by the Board of Directors.

Recipient - 2023

Marie "Masha" Yovanovitch

Marie Yovanovitch was, most recently, the U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine. She previously served as Ambassador to the Republic of Armenia (2008-2011) and the Kyrgyz Republic (2005-2008). She most recently served as the Dean of the School of Language Studies at the Foreign Service Institute, U.S. Department of State. Previously she was the International Advisor and Deputy Commandant at the Dwight D. Eisenhower School for National Security and Resource Strategy, National Defense University. Earlier she served as the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for the Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs and before that as the bureau’s Deputy Assistant Secretary responsible for issues related to the Nordic, Baltic, and Central European countries.

In 2003-2004, Ambassador Yovanovitch was the Senior Advisor to the Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs. Prior to that, she was the Deputy Chief of Mission of the U.S. Embassy in Kyiv, Ukraine. Within the Department of State, Ambassador Yovanovitch has worked on the Russia desk, the Office of European Security Affairs, and the Operations Center. She has also worked overseas at the U.S. Embassies in Moscow, London, Ottawa, and Mogadishu.

A Career Member of the Senior Foreign Service, Ambassador Yovanovitch has been granted the Senior Foreign Service Performance Award six times and the State
 

Department’s Superior Honor Award on five occasions. She is also the recipient of the Presidential Distinguished Service Award and the Secretary’s Diplomacy in Human Rights Award.

Ambassador Yovanovitch is a graduate of Princeton University where she earned a BA in History and Russian Studies. She studied at the Pushkin Institute and received an MS from the National Defense University.

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Walter and Leonore Annenberg,
founders of the Annenberg Foundation

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