USIP Expert Tapped for State Department

For Immediate Release, November 29, 2011
Contact: Allison Sturma. 202-429-4725

(Washington) – Scott Lasensky, a senior program officer at the United States Institute of Peace, has been named by the U.S. State Department as a senior policy adviser in the department’s Washington office for the U.S. mission to the United Nations. His portfolio will include Israel/Palestine, Syria and Lebanon issues.

“Scott has special expertise on Middle East issues, and his appointment is yet another example of USIP’s support for our nation’s foreign policy goals – especially in this critical region,” said USIP President Richard H. Solomon. “We look forward to future collaboration with the State Department and Scott on a wide range of issues related to international conflict management and peace building.”

Lasensky’s work at USIP focused on Israel, Palestine, the greater Middle East and U.S. foreign policy toward the region. He co-authored, in 2008, "Negotiating Arab-Israeli Peace: American Leadership in the Middle East." His new book, "The Peace Puzzle: America’s Quest for Arab-Israeli Peace," is forthcoming.

Earlier this month he helped organize the day-long “Twenty Years After Madrid” conference at USIP, which featured former secretary of state James Baker and other high-level U.S., Israeli, Palestinian and Middle Eastern diplomats. Participants explored the challenges of peacemaking in the region and reviewed lessons learned from the watershed 1991 diplomatic conference in Madrid with an eye toward future progress. A final report is expected next month.

In 2009-2011, Lasensky served as the senior adviser to the Senior Working Group on Middle East Peace (USIP), a bipartisan task force co-chaired by former National Security Advisers Sandy Berger and Steve Hadley.

Lasensky’s appointment became effective Nov. 21.

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The United States Institute of Peace is an independent, nonpartisan conflict management center created by Congress to prevent and mitigate international conflict without resorting to violence. USIP’s work saves lives, increases the government’s ability to deal with conflicts before they escalate, reduces federal costs, and enhances U.S. national security.  USIP is headquartered in Washington, DC.To learn more visit www.usip.org.

November 29, 2011