South Africa: Remarks by Her Excellency Barbara Masekela, Ambassador to the United StatesA diplomat of note for many years and a key political activist in the fight to end apartheid in South Africa, Barbara Masekela began her career with 12 years as a professor of English Literature and also worked with the ANC Observer Mission to the United Nations to help build the Anti-Apartheid movement in the United States.In 1982, Ms Masekela left the United States to work full time at the ANC headquarters in Lusaka, Zambia. After the release of Nelson Mandela in February 1990, she served as his Chief of Staff, until her appointment as Ambassador to France and to UNESCO in 1995.Returning to South Africa in 1999, she joined the corporate world as Director of the Standard Bank of South Africa, the South African Broadcasting Corporation, the World Diamond Council and the International Marketing Council, among others. She also became a trustee of the Nelson Mandela Children's Fund and the Nelson Mandela Foundation.Retiring in March 2003 as Executive Director for Public and Corporate Affairs for De Beers Consolidated Mines, she returned to public service as President Mbeki's Ambassador to the United States in June of that same year.moreless
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