LEWISTON – Lewiston Mayor Lionel C. Guay Jr. met with U.S. State Department Deputy Director of the Office of European Security and Political Affairs Jennifer E. Laurendeau at City Hall on Oct. 12. Laurendeau is a Lewiston native and a 1974 graduate of Lewiston High School.

Laurendeau returned to Lewiston from Washington, D.C., as part of Secretary of State Colin Powell’s Hometown Diplomats Program, which links people in the State Department to their hometown local governments, public schools, colleges and civic organizations. Powell launched the program on Jan. 14.

Laurendeau said the program is not only an opportunity to discuss the work of the State Department and how it impacts local residents, but is also an opportunity to put a face on foreign policy, a means for others to share in the experiences of foreign service and an opportunity to create career interest regarding work at the State Department.

Laurendeau said, “In addition to meeting with Mayor Guay and city administrators to discuss U.S. foreign policy issues that have special relevance for Lewiston, I hope to use my term a a State Department Hometown Diplomat’ to talk with area high school and college students about career opportunities in public service, especially international relations.”

Guay noted, “We were honored to meet with Ms. Laurendeau, as the visit provided much insight into the work of the State Department. It was also encouraging to learn that cities and towns will be the very positive focus of the department’s informative Hometown Diplomats’ Program.”

Laurendeau joined the State Department in 1989 and has worked on European security issues for 15 years. As deputy director of the Office of European Security and Political Affairs, she leads the Defense Policy and Arms Control Unit, which manages a range of U.S. and NATO conventional and nuclear forces issues and issues relating to the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (the CFE Treaty).

She is involved in U.S. efforts to promote full implementation of commitments made by the Russian Federation at the Istanbul Summit of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe in 1999 on withdrawal of military forces from Georgia and Moldova.

She has received the department’s superior and meritorious honor awards for her work and is a 2003-2004 Fellow with the Council for Excellence in Government. Following her Lewiston High School graduation, Laurendeau graduated from Wellesley College in 1978 and received a PhD in history from Harvard University in 1986.

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