April 06, 2022
Ambassador (ret.) Kenneth S. Yalowitz
As US and world attention are riveted on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the effects of global warming in the Arctic with respect to US relations with Russia and China based on the need for sustainable economic development and increasing environmental protection have not disappeared. They remain existential problems for the planet. What do the rising temperatures in the Arctic region mean in terms of their outsized significance and in particular their causal effects on rising sea levels and extreme weather events globally? How has the Ukraine war affected cooperation in the Arctic Council and will the Arctic become yet another area where confrontation not cooperation prevail?
Ambassador Yalowitz was a career Foreign Service Officer from 1966-2001 and served twice as U.S. ambassador: to the Republic of Belarus from 1994-1997; and to Georgia from 1998-2001. Other overseas assignments included Moscow (twice) including in 1991 at the time of the breakup of the USSR, The Hague and the US Mission to NATO in Brussels. In 1984, Ambassador Yalowitz received a State Department superior honor award for crisis management in the shootdown of KAL-007. He was chosen for the Ambassador Robert Frasure award for peacemaking and conflict prevention in 2000 for his work to prevent the spillover of the Chechen war into Georgia. In 2009, he was invited to join the American Academy of Diplomacy whose members are former senior US Ambassadors and high-level government officials and in 2011 he was elected to membership in the Council on Foreign Relations.
Following his retirement in 2001 from the Department of State, Ambassador Yalowitz began teaching graduate courses at Georgetown University dealing with Russia’s conflicts with its South Caucasus neighbors. From 2003-12 he directed the Dickey Center for International Understanding at Dartmouth College. During that time, he co-taught courses with faculty members on authoritarianism and democracy in the former USSR and the politics of language in the South Caucasus countries. He then returned to teaching at Georgetown where he was asked to serve as the Director of the Conflict Resolution MA Program from June 30, 2015 to July 1, 2018. Subsequently, he remained an adjunct professor at Georgetown, was the Cyrus Vance Visiting Scholar at Mount Holyoke College in the Spring Term of 2019, and most recently started teaching at Virginia Tech as an adjunct.
His opeds or articles have appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, International Herald Tribune, Boston Globe, Christian Science Monitor, The National Interest, The American Interest, The Hill, Politico, Newsweek, and Moscow Times amongst others and he is frequently interviewed and quoted. Ambassador Yalowitz is from Chicago (DOB May 28, 1941), graduated from the University of Wisconsin and has an MA, MPhil and Russian Institute Certificate from Columbia University. He speaks Russian.