Aspen Institute Italia, with Chairman Giulio Tremonti, remembers “the great contribution made by Madeleine K. Albright – first woman to act as Secretary of State in the United States – to American foreign policy and to all the Aspen family. Madeleine K. Albright leaves behind an example of leadership, which will continue to guide the Aspen Institute in its mission to promote a free, fair and just society.”
Albright’s political and intellectual commitment, when faced with global crises, was at the center of The Aspen Institute’s activities. In 2012, specifically, she was a key figure in the creation of Aspen Central Europe, in Prague.
Named a Trustee in 2002, Albright led the Board’s Program Strategy Committee and founded the Aspen Ministers Forum, a successful project aimed at reinforcing diplomatic relations between the US and Europe. In 2011, she received the Institute’s Henry Crown Leadership Award.
Albright’s family fled her native Czechoslovakia when she was a child, to escape Nazi and Communist persecution, and eventually reached Denver, Colorado. She grew up to get a PhD at Columbia University in international relations and went on to hold prominent positions in the Carter Administration, before eventually assuming the role of Secretary of State under Bill Clinton. In 2012, Barack Obama awarded her the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
As a widely admired diplomat of the highest level, Madeleine K. Albright will remain an icon in American foreign policy. She was also a prolific author, reaching the top of the New York Times bestseller lists seven separate times. Her last book came out in 2020: Hell and Other Destinations. Other successful books include her autobiography – Madam Secretary: A Memoir (2003) – as well as The Mighty and the Almighty: Reflections on America, God and World Affairs (2006); Prague Winter: A Personal Story of Remembrance and War, 1937-1948 (2012), and Fascism: A Warning (2018).