March was Women’s History Month in the United States. As we celebrated the historic contributions of women to society despite unprecedented challenges, it was also important to recognize the stories of rising women leaders today who play an integral part in American innovation and productivity for the future generation. Throughout March, the Department’s Bureau of East Asia and Pacific Affairs (EAP) highlighted some of the amazing women who are making their mark in U.S. diplomatic efforts both here in Washington, DC and at our U.S. Embassies and Consulates across the East Asian and Pacific region.
The EAP Bureau is led by Acting Assistant Secretary Susan Thornton, and is also home to many women in senior leadership positions, including in half of our Bureau’s 14 offices. Overseas, six female Ambassadors represent the United States in our region, including posts in Malaysia, Laos, the Marshall Islands, Palau, Papua New Guinea, and Timor-Leste. The EAP Bureau is proud to support policies that promote gender equality and women’s empowerment both here in the Department and around the world—because when women do better, countries do better.
As Women’s History Month comes to a close, we wanted to share some highlights of our EAP Bureau’s women leaders with you.
March is #WomensHistoryMonth! Follow along this month as we highlight women leaders in @USAsiaPacific and the work they do every day to support U.S. diplomatic efforts and #EmpowerWomen! https://t.co/sVk6y2t3os pic.twitter.com/Im9S2lOUZe— EAP Bureau (@USAsiaPacific) March 1, 2018
A message from Acting Assistant Secretary Susan Thornton on #InternationalWomensDay: It's important to promote diversity because that is the way we continue to promote tolerance, peace, and security in all of our societies. #EmpowerWomen #IWD2018 pic.twitter.com/dupe4iXWUa— EAP Bureau (@USAsiaPacific) March 8, 2018
.@USAsiaPacific's Regina Kang works on regional security and non-proliferation issues in U.S.-#China relations. The United States seeks a results-oriented, constructive bilateral relationship with China. #WomenInDiplomacy #WomensHistoryMonth pic.twitter.com/Pql2HXEPiZ— EAP Bureau (@USAsiaPacific) March 28, 2018
Since 1967, @ASEAN has made remarkable strides in maintaining peace, accelerating economic growth, and improving the lives of the citizens of its 10 member states in #SoutheastAsia. #WomenInDiplomacy pic.twitter.com/G8M9MsW47H— EAP Bureau (@USAsiaPacific) March 27, 2018
Advancing women's economic participation in #APEC is a core priority for the United States, as we know the region will never reach its full economic potential until women reach theirs. #EmpowerWomen pic.twitter.com/lLLIMZsI5N— EAP Bureau (@USAsiaPacific) March 19, 2018
#Korea desk officer Vanna Lavery helps advance bilateral relations with one of our closest allies, the Republic of Korea! #WomenInDiplomacy #EmpowerWomen #WomensHistoryMonth pic.twitter.com/p2bjeNp0kO— EAP Bureau (@USAsiaPacific) March 15, 2018
#YSEALI Coordinator Nitza Sola-Rotger helps 120,000 young leaders in #SoutheastAsia strengthen ties between the U.S. and @ASEAN in their local communities. Home to over 625 million people (60% under the age of 35), #ASEAN is central to our #IndoPacific strategy. #WomenInDiplomacy pic.twitter.com/cjG9oBvYp0— EAP Bureau (@USAsiaPacific) March 13, 2018
Office of #Japanese Affairs Director @JulieChungFSO loves engaging in youth programs to empower next generation leaders throughout the Asia-Pacific. #InternationalWomensDay #EmpowerWomen #WomenInDiplomacy pic.twitter.com/pNI0T0H9FZ— EAP Bureau (@USAsiaPacific) March 7, 2018
#PacificIslands Officer Jenny Wright has worked for the past 5+ years to advance U.S. relationships with the Pacific Islands, including bringing global recognition to sustainable Pacific businesses and building U.S.-Pacific economic ties. #EmpowerWomen #WomenInDiplomacy pic.twitter.com/4epbC4tnqo— EAP Bureau (@USAsiaPacific) March 4, 2018
Navdeep Aujla is proud to serve in the Office of Maritime Southeast Asia working to advance our broad relationship with the #Philippines. The U.S.-Philippine alliance is one of our most enduring relationships in the Indo-Pacific region. #WomensHistoryMonth #WomenInDiplomacy pic.twitter.com/xTBLvRVJUF— EAP Bureau (@USAsiaPacific) March 30, 2018
For A/ PDAS @WPatrickMurphy, his #WomenOfCourage are the terrific @StateDept colleagues he works with every day on bilateral and multilateral #SoutheastAsia diplomacy. Who are the women who have inspired you? Share your photos and stories as we celebrate women leaders this month! pic.twitter.com/OzbIhhQyi2— EAP Bureau (@USAsiaPacific) March 21, 2018
About the Author: Connie Paik serves as a Public Affairs Specialist in the Bureau of East Asia and Pacific Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.
Editor's Note: This entry also appears in the U.S. Department of State's publication on Medium.com.