Category: Featured News, News, Speaking of Diplomacy

Title: ‘Gumbo Diplomacy’ and the rise of Linda Thomas-Greenfield

Author: K. Riva Levinson
Date Published: December 10, 2020

When President-elect Joe Biden announced his foreign policy team, it was Linda-Thomas Greenfield — his pick for U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, a woman of color and a 35-year career diplomat — who stole the show.

On that Tuesday, Nov. 23rd, during her three minutes in the Delaware spotlight, Thomas-Greenfield, a Louisiana native, showed the world her singular style, coining the phrase #GumboDiplomacy, which she explained as “Cajun spin” on connecting with people to solve problems.

Sporting a gold Ethiopian Cross over a single strand of pearls, Thomas-Greenfield spoke about her parents who struggled to give her the opportunities that they never had and of her mentor, Edward Perkins, the first black American Ambassador to South Africa who told her never to harbor self-doubt.

“My mother taught me to lead with the power of kindness and compassion to make the world a better place. I’ve carried that lesson with me throughout my career in Foreign Service — and, if confirmed, will do the same as Ambassador to the United Nations,” posted Thomas-Greenfield on Twitter after the ceremony. [Read more]


[Read ISD’s statement on Ambassador Thomas-Greenfield’s nomination]