Date: 03/01/2012 Description: Women's History Month 2012: Judith Baroody - State Dept Image Judith Baroody’s professional career as a public diplomacy officer in the Foreign Service (FE-MC) has taken her to Damascus, Tel Aviv, Casablanca, Nicosia, Santiago, Baghdad, Paris, and now to the honor of being a Senior Fellow at a Washington think tank, the German Marshall Fund of the United States. Perhaps more unusual has been her academic career.

At the time Judith took the Foreign Service exam, she was a student at the University of Virginia, pursuing a master’s in foreign affairs. She was accepted into the service before finishing her degree, so she entered with a bachelor’s degree. While she was in junior officer and later Arabic training, she completed her thesis and got her M.A., a year after entering.

After tours in Syria and Israel, Judith decided she wanted more education, so she took nine months’ leave without pay, launched on a doctorate at American University, returned to work and completed the PhD at night while working full-time. Subsequently she earned another master's at the National War College. She may be the only FSO who has entered with a B.A. and subsequently earned two master's and a doctorate.

Having an academic background in international relations has been empowering in allowing Judith to view her work not only on the day-to-day level but within the context of history and political theory learned in graduate schools. Judith was recently honored by inclusion in the Smithsonian-funded exhibit on Arab-American Patriots and Peacemakers. Her book, “Media Access and the Military: the Case of the Gulf War,” was published in 1998 and she serves on the editorial board of the Foreign Service Journal.