Deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken '88 Speaks at Annual D.C. Alumni Dinner

Blinken Discussed U.S. Diplomatic Leadership and the Importance of Public Service at Columbia Law School Association of Washington D.C. Event

New York, April 30, 2015—Distinguished Columbia Law School alumnus and Deputy Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken ’88 discussed U.S. leadership in diplomacy with generations of alumni and several students from the Externship on the Federal Government on April 23 at The Columbia Law School Association of Washington D.C.’s 19th annual dinner.

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Deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken '88 addresses alumni.
Blinken also talked about the importance of public service and took questions from attendees who included graduates from the past five decades. He noted other prominent alumni in the diplomatic corps who were present, including Ambassador Brett McGurk ’99, deputy special presidential envoy for the global coalition to counter ISIL and deputy assistant secretary for Iraq and Iran; and Daniel F. Feldman ’93, special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan. Also in attendance among the dozens of distinguished alumni was Nina J. Luzzatto Gardner ’86, director of consulting firm Strategy International and the daughter of Professor Emeritus of Law and International Organization Richard N. Gardner, former ambassador to Italy and Spain.
 
Columbia Law School Association President Claire Woods ’11, a U.S. Department of Justice trial attorney, kicked off the gathering at the Sequoia Restaurant. Professor Matthew C. Waxman, faculty co-chair of the Roger Hertog Program on Law and National Security and adjunct senior fellow with the Council on Foreign Relations, introduced Blinken. Waxman has held senior positions at the U.S. Department of State, Department of Defense, and National Security Council. Dean for Social Justice Initiatives Ellen P. Chapnick and Director of Government Programs Rachel Pauley were also in attendance.
 
      
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Columbia Law School Association President Claire Woods ’11, a DOJ trial attorney, left, and Professor Matthew C. Waxman chat before addressing guests at the reception where Dean for Social Justice Initiatives Ellen P. Chapnick and Daniel F. Feldman '93 had the chance to catch up.
      
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(left to right) Lewis Mendelson '58 speaks with Nina J. Luzzatto Gardner ’86, and Brett McGurk ’99, and John Reardon '93 enjoy a visit.
 
 
Before Blinken was confirmed by the U.S. Senate to his current post in December, he served as assistant and deputy national security adviser to President Obama, and earlier as national security adviser to Vice President Joe Biden. From 2002 to 2008, Blinken served as staff director for the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee. He was also a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. During the Clinton administration, Blinken served on the National Security Council staff as special assistant to the president and senior director for European affairs, as well as special assistant to the assistant secretary of state for European affairs at the U.S. Department of State.