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Laura E. Kennedy, U.S. Ambassador to the Conference on Disarmament (March 2010- May 2013)
September 12, 2012

U.S. Permanent Representative to the Conference on Disarmament


U.S. Special Representative for Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention (BWC) Issues

Portrait of a woman
Ambassador Laura Kennedy

March 2010 through May 2013

Ambassador Kennedy, a Minister Counselor in the Foreign Service, served as U.S. Permanent Representative to the Conference on Disarmament in Geneva and U.S. Special Representative for Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention (BWC) Issues from March 2010 through May 2013.

Prior to her assignment to Geneva, Ambassador Kennedy most recently served as International Affairs Advisor and Deputy Commandant of the National War College. After returning in 2003 from service as Ambassador to Turkmenistan, she directed the 46th class of the Senior Seminar, the State Department’s interagency leadership program. She subsequently served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State with responsibility for Southern Europe, Central Asia and the Caucasus.

Previous foreign assignments included Turkey, a detail to Operation Provide Comfort during the Kurdish refugee crisis that followed the first Gulf War, and service as Charge at the newly established U.S. Embassy in Armenia.  She served twice in the former Soviet Union at U.S. Embassy Moscow and on a detail to an official exchange exhibit in Ukraine, Kazakhstan and Tajikistan. Kennedy served twice in Vienna, first with the U.S. delegation to the conventional arms control talks (MBFR and CFE), and later as Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Mission to the UN in Vienna which has responsibility for IAEA, CTBTO, space, and international narcotics and crime control programs. Earlier Washington assignments included the China and Soviet desks, Deputy Director of the Office of Syria, Jordan, Lebanon and Palestinian Affairs, and Office Director for Central Eurasia and Caspian energy.

Her education includes a B.A. from Vassar College, an M.A. from American University, a diploma from the National War College, a sabbatical year at Stanford, and the Senior Seminar. Her languages are Russian and Turkish and she has also studied French, German and Indonesian.  In addition to the Distinguished Honor Award bestowed by Secretary of State Colin Powell, she has received Presidential Performance, Superior and Meritorious Honor Awards. She is married to fellow diplomat John J. Feeney and has two children, Martin and Patrick Feeney.