Like I said before, one of the best things you can do at a job or internship is attend events outside of your office or typical workday. I was fortunate enough last week to attend two events where the Secretary spoke, both of which were important, high profile events in their issue area.

The first event was a panel discussion on the status of LGBT issues in foreign policy, hosted by Gays and Lesbians in Foreign Affairs Agencies (GLIFAA), which featured a senior-level panel, with remarks by Secretary Clinton. It touched on issues which affect LGBT members of the foreign affairs agencies (State, USAID, etc.) and their families, as well as LGBT rights as human rights and human rights as LGBT issues, as Secretary Clinton asserted last year. For more details, see the official write-up on humanrights.gov.

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from left: Assistant Secretary Michael H. Posner, Undersecretary for Democracy and Global Affairs Maria Otero (moderator), Deputy Administrator for USAID Don Steinberg, and Deputy Assistant Secretary Daniel B. Baer; photo courtesy of humanrights.gov.

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Secretary Clinton (photo courtesy state.gov/r/pa/ei/pix/)

 

The second event which I attended was the highlight of my summer – the 2011 TIP Report release. As I mentioned before, I’ve been researching trafficking in persons for many years, and although it is no longer the focus of my academic or professional life, it is something which I still feel passionately about. I’ve read the TIP report every year and even had friends refer to it as my “bible,” especially while writing my theses. This year, I got to attend the super-big-deal event where the Secretary formally released the report, and it was way better than I could have imagined! It was an overflow crowd attended by ambassadors from over 30 countries, members of the civil and foreign service, NGOs, and civil society members. The release was presided over by Under Secretary for Democracy and Global Affairs Maria Otero, Ambassador-at-large for the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons Luis CdeBaca, and Secretary Clinton. For the text of each of their speeches, please visit: http://www.state.gov/g/167166.htm and http://www.state.gov/secretary/rm/2011/06/167156.htm. To read the text of this year’s TIP Report, please visit: http://www.state.gov/g/tip/.

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Secretary Clinton speaking at the TIP Report Release, with Under Secretary Maria Otero (in the pink jacket) and Ambassador Luis CdeBaca (in the black suit), and the recipients of the TIP Heroes Award. (photo courtesy state.gov/r/pa/ei/pix/)