Madeleine Albright to Address New York City Students

Former Secretary of State to speak about her new book "Read My Pins," with students at Museum of Arts and Design

Discussion to be held Monday, December 14th in conjunction with Museum’s current exhibition, "Read My Pins," featuring Dr. Albright’s pin collection

New York, NY (December 12, 2009)

On Monday, December 14, from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30am, former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright will share the stories of how she used her vast collection of brooches to make diplomatic history. In conversation with local high school students, Dr. Albright will talk about how she used her brooches as a means of personal and diplomatic expression, highlighting examples of pins in the exhibit; and discuss the current foreign policy challenges facing the United States. 
The 150 students, from five local high schools, will be able to participate in a Q&A with
Dr. Albright following the talk.

Madeleine Albright was the first female secretary of state of the United States and became at that time, the highest ranking woman in U.S. history.  Like most women, she had occasionally worn pins before entering public service, but it was when she took office that she came to understand how powerful the symbolic meaning of jewelry could be.

"We are thrilled that Secretary Albright will discuss her pin collection and the communicative value of jewelry with our students,” states Holly Hotchner, the Museum’s Nanette L. Laitman Director.  “Secretary Albright recognizes the importance of dialogue with our future leaders and is pleased to have the opportunity to share stories and experiences with them. Many young people, especially girls, have observed the exhibition with great enthusiasm and we are delighted to bring the Secretary’s life closer to them.”

Albright’s diverse collection of brooches is both international and democratic –
dime-store pins share pride of place with designer creations and family heirlooms.  Together, the collection reflects the many purposes of jewelry, from the most personal to the most public, illustrating both Albright’s history-making career and her imaginative use of pins as a means of diplomatic expression. 

Madeleine K. Albright was the 64th Secretary of State of the United States.  Serving from 1997 until 2001, she was the first woman to hold that position, which she assumed after four years as U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations.  During her tenure, Dr. Albright was known for her strong commitment to democracy, arms control, human rights and peace in the Middle East, Africa and other regions of conflict.  She played a lead role in forging America’s successful response to terror and ethnic cleansing in Kosovo, and was a forceful advocate of bringing war criminals to justice.

Since leaving office, Dr. Albright has authored four New York Times bestsellers.  Her autobiography, Madam Secretary: A Memoir, was published in 2003.  A second book, The Mighty and the Almighty: Reflections on America, God, and World Affairs, entered bookstores in 2006.  Memo to the President: How We Can Restore America’s Reputation and Leadership was published in 2008. Her latest book, Read My Pins: Stories from a Diplomat’s Jewel Box was published in 2009.

Currently, Albright serves as Chair of Albright Stonebridge Group, a global strategy firm, and Chair and Principal of Albright Capital Management, LLC, an investment advisory company focused on emerging markets.  She is the first Michael and Virginia Mortara Endowed Distinguished Professor in the Practice of Diplomacy at Georgetown University School of Foreign Service.  She chairs both the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs, and the Pew Global Attitudes Project and is president of the Truman Scholarship Foundation.  Dr. Albright co-chairs the UNDP’s Commission on Legal Empowerment of the Poor, serves on the Board of Directors of the Council on Foreign Relations, the Board of Trustees for the Aspen Institute and the Board of Directors of the Center for a New American Security.

The Museum of Arts and Design explores how craftsmanship, art, and design intersect in the visual arts today. The Museum focuses on contemporary creativity and the ways in which artists and designers from around the world transform materials through processes ranging from the handmade to cutting edge technologies.

The Museum’s exhibition program explores and illuminates issues and ideas, highlights creativity and craftsmanship, and celebrates the limitless potential of materials and techniques when used by creative and innovative artists. MAD’s permanent collection is global in scope and focuses on art, craft, and design from 1950 to the present day.

At the center of the Museum’s mission is education. The Museum’s dynamic new facility features classrooms and studios for master classes, seminars, and workshops for students, families and adults. Three open artist studios engage visitors in the creative processes of artists at work and enhance the exhibition programs. Lectures, films, performances and symposia related to the Museum’s collection and topical subjects affecting the world of contemporary art, craft and design are held in a renovated 144-seat auditorium.


Claire Laporte
Chief External Affairs Officer

Christina Allan
Communications Associate

Tel: 212.299.7737