Ambassador Charlene Barshefsky, Senior International Partner at the law firm of WilmerHale in Washington, D.C., has been elected a Trustee.
Ambassador Charlene Barshefsky, Senior International Partner at the law firm of WilmerHale in Washington, D.C., and former U.S. Trade Representative and member of the President's Cabinet, has been elected a Trustee of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. She becomes one of 10 Trustees of the Institute, a medical research organization dedicated to the discovery and dissemination of new knowledge in the life sciences.
Barshefsky, 57, served as the nation's chief trade negotiator and principal trade policy maker from 1997 to 2001 and as acting and deputy trade representative from 1993 to 1996. As the U.S. Trade Representative, Barshefsky was responsible for the negotiation of hundreds of complex trade, investment and intellectual property rights agreements with countries around the world, as well as global agreements on telecommunications, financial services, information technology products, and cyberspace. She is best known internationally as the architect and negotiator of China's historic World Trade Organization agreement.
A 1972 graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Barshefsky received a law degree in 1975 from the Columbus School of Law at the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C, earning numerous honors at both institutions.
Named one of the 50 most influential women lawyers in the United States by The National Law Journal, and recipient of a number of professional awards and honorary degrees, Barshefsky joined WilmerHale in 2001, following her appointment as a public policy scholar at Washington's Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. Her legal practice focuses on global business and investment advice, commercial and government negotiations. She serves on the boards of directors of The American Express Co., Intel Corporation, The Estée Lauder Companies, and Starwood Hotels & Resorts World Wide Incorporated. Barshefsky also serves on the board of the Council on Foreign Relations.
HHMI is one of the world's largest philanthropies, with laboratories across the United States and grants programs throughout the world. The Institute is a nonprofit medical research organization that employs hundreds of leading biomedical scientists working at the forefront of their fields. In addition, through its grants program and other activities, HHMI is helping to enhance science education at all levels and maintain the vigor of biomedical science worldwide. HHMI's endowment at the end of the 2006 fiscal year was approximately $16.3 billion.