Caroline Kennedy Joins Carnegie Corporation of New York Board of Trustees

Caroline Kennedy, the first woman to serve as United States ambassador to Japan, has been elected to join Carnegie Corporation of New York’s board of trustees, effective March 8, 2018.

Caroline Kennedy speaks at the Smithsonian American Art Museum
Ambassador Caroline Kennedy speaks at the gala opening for "American Visionary: John F. Kennedy's Life and Times," an exhibition held at the Smithsonian American Art Museum in 2017. (Photo: Larry French/Getty Images for WS Productions)

“With her background as a distinguished diplomat, an advocate for public school reform, and a best-selling author, Caroline Kennedy is an exceptional addition to the Corporation’s board of trustees,” said Thomas H. Kean, former governor of New Jersey, chairman of the 9/11 Commission, and the Corporation’s board chair. “She has served on numerous high-impact boards, and her wide range of expertise will be a valuable asset in helping to lead the Corporation’s work.”

"I have long admired the work of Carnegie Corporation of New York, and I am honored to join its esteemed board," said Ambassador Kennedy. "I look forward to working with its members and staff on the important issues of our time."

“It is a great pleasure for me to welcome Caroline Kennedy to our board and institution,” said Vartan Gregorian, president of Carnegie Corporation of New York. “She is a woman of great accomplishment: a diplomat, an author, a champion of education, education reform, and civics — a citizen par excellence.”

While serving as ambassador to Japan from November 2013 to January 2017, Kennedy played a critical role in the commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II by overseeing the historic visits of president Barack Obama to Hiroshima and Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe to Pearl Harbor. In other work, she led the effort to return the Northern Training Area in Okinawa, consisting of almost 10,000 acres, from U.S. forces back to the Japanese government — a move that is credited with strengthening the U.S.-Japan alliance. Kennedy in also known for supporting the economic empowerment of women and for working to increase student exchanges between the U.S. and Japan.

From 2002 to 2013 Kennedy played a leading role in New York City school reform efforts, heading the Office of Strategic Partnerships and serving as vice chairwoman of the Fund for Public Schools. Transforming the fund into a system-wide vehicle for private support of public school reform, she helped to create the first K–12 arts curriculum funded by the private sector.

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Kennedy is a lawyer as well as an author and editor of 11 New York Times best-selling books on subjects such as constitutional law, American history, civics, and poetry. She serves as president of the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation, as chair of the Harvard Institute of Politics, as a trustee of the Asia Society, and as a director of The Boeing Company, among other board-level responsibilities. Kennedy earned a JD from Columbia Law School and a BA from Harvard University.