Category: Diverse Diplomacy, Event Announcements, Events, Featured News, News

Title: Event | Retention Rates in the Foreign Service

Diversity and Retention in the Foreign Service

Maryum Saifee, Anupama Prattipati, and Heera Kamboj

Date: Thursday, February 17
Time: 10:30 AM – 11:30 AM EST

Maryum Saifee, Anupama Prattipati, Heera Kamboj


Join us for a panel discussion on retention rates with mid-level Foreign Service Officers Maryum Saifee and Anupama Prattipati, moderated by Heera Kamboj. They will share insights on diversity and retention at the State Department and offer advice for a successful career in foreign policy.

The Diverse Diplomacy Leaders Speaker Series connects current and former career Foreign and Civil Service Officers with those considering or entering careers in foreign policy. This event is brought to you as part of an Una Chapman Cox Foundation project on American Diplomacy and the Foreign Service.

Learn more about Diverse Diplomacy at

This event will have live closed captioning.


Maryum Saifee

Maryum Saifee is a Foreign Service Officer currently serving as senior advisor in the Secretary’s Office of Diversity and Inclusion.

Ms. Saifee started her career in Cairo during the early days of the Arab Spring in 2011 and later served in Baghdad during the U.S. military withdrawal from Iraq and spokesperson for the U.S. Consulate in Lahore. In Washington, she was a policy advisor in the Bureau of International Organization Affairs, the Secretary’s Office of Global Women’s Issues, and the Secretary’s Office of Religion and Global Affairs.

Prior to joining the State Department, she was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Jordan and an AmeriCorps Volunteer in Seattle. She also consulted for the United Nations Development Program, Acumen Fund, and the Ford Foundation. In 2018, Maryum took a sabbatical from the State Department to pursue a Council on Foreign Relations International Affairs Fellowship. In her personal capacity, she also led a 30-person task force on State Department reform as a senior visiting fellow at the Truman Center for National Policy. She is a 2019 Presidential Leadership Scholar and a 2021 Women inPower Fellow.

Maryum is a graduate of Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs.

Anupama Prattipati

Anu Prattipati is the Political and Economic Counselor at the U.S. Embassy in The Hague. Prior to that she was a Deputy Office Director in the Office of European Union and Regional Affairs at the Department of State. As deputy she covered European economic issues, including trade, macroeconomic issues, sanctions, energy, digital and privacy issues, and science and technology. Prior to her assignment in EUR, Anu served as the Deputy Office Director on the Pakistan Desk from 2016-2018, overseeing political and political military affairs. She has also been posted to U.S. Embassies in Pakistan, Nigeria, and China. In addition to these overseas assignments, Ms. Prattipati served in the State Department in the Office of the Under Secretary for Political Affairs, the Operations Center, and the Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs. She graduated from Georgetown University with a B.A. in International Business and received an MBA and M.A. from The George Washington University in International Business and International Trade and Investment Policy.

Heera Kamboj

Heera Kamboj is a career member of the U.S. Foreign Service, and was a 2020-2021 Rusk Fellow at ISD. She has served in Washington, D.C., Dubai, Chennai, Mexico City, and Kabul. Heera won the 2012 Swanee Hunt Award for Advancing Women’s Role in Policy Formulation for her work in Afghanistan. She was a recipient of the Thomas R. Pickering Fellowship and is an alumna of the International Career Advancement Program. She is fluent in Farsi, Dari, Spanish, and Punjabi and is a graduate of George Washington University and the Harvard Kennedy School.