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Mary Beth West


Ms. West is a retired international lawyer and diplomat. Her career was primarily at the U.S. Department of State in Washington, D.C. where she worked on a number of legal issues, including law of the sea, international trade, European and Canadian affairs, and international claims.  In 1996 she moved out of the legal office and was appointed Deputy Assistant Secretary for Oceans, a position for which she received Senate confirmation for the Rank of Ambassador.  From 2003 to 2005, she was U.S. State Department Chair and Professor at the Industrial College of the Armed Forces of the National Defense University.


Since retiring from the State Department in 2005, Ms. West has been a contractor with the Department working on international human rights issues.  She was also Director of the Washington, D.C. Office of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) from 2010 to 2013.  Ms. West received her JD from Stanford Law School and BA from the University of Michigan.  

Singing is one of Ms. West’s favorite activities.  She has sung in church choirs and other choruses since she was young.  While her voice isn’t good enough to audition for VOX Femina, she is delighted to be involved with and to support this wonderful choral organization.


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