Shirley Temple Black – First Woman to Serve as U.S. Chief of Protocol
February 11, 2014
I just wanted to take a moment to recognize Shirley Temple Black this morning. My entire family was saddened to hear about her passing, and I will never forget the countless memories I have of watching her movies with my Mom when I was little.
While she may have been famous to the world for being a child actress, and for bringing joy into people’s lives during the Great Depression, I wanted to also note that she had an extensive career serving our country as a diplomat.
Her first official government posting was as a U.S. delegate to the United Nations. She would eventually also go on to serve as the ambassador to both Ghana and Czechoslovakia. And, from 1976-1977 she was the first woman to be the chief of protocol -- trail blazing the way for other women.
In this position she advised the President, the Vice President, and the Secretary of State on all matters of national and international diplomatic protocol – thus enabling our leaders at the time the ability to advance the foreign policy goals of the United States by creating an environment for successful diplomacy.
She was an icon in many ways, and she will be missed.