Mary Beth Markey

Mary Beth Markey, during a recent visit to the Tibetan Children’s Village in Dharamsala, India.

The Board of Directors of the International Campaign for Tibet announces with regret that it has accepted the resignation of Ms. Mary Beth Markey from her position as ICT President, effective the end of May 2013. Throughout 25 years of political and human rights advocacy for Tibet in Washington, D.C. and internationally, including as U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee staff and at the International Campaign for Tibet, Ms. Markey has been at the forefront of the Tibet movement.

Ms. Markey served as ICT Director of Government Relations (1996-2002), ICT Vice President for International Advocacy (2003-2010) and ICT President (July 6, 2010-May 31, 2013). Outstanding initiatives launched under her leadership include, in the area of advocacy, the Congressional Gold Medal for His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan Policy Act; in the area of policy analysis, ICT annual reports “Dangerous Crossings: Conditions Impacting the Flight of Tibetan Refugees” and “60 Years of Chinese Misrule: Arguing Cultural Genocide in Tibet;” in the area of funding, the ICT Partnership for the Sustainability of Tibetan Communities and a National Endowment for Democracy grant for election-monitoring in exile; and, in the area of organizational development, the expansion of ICT advocacy from Washington, Berlin and Amsterdam to new offices in Brussels and London and a partnership with the Australia Tibet Council.

Ms. Markey’s strategic vision contributed to the institutionalization of the Tibet issue within the U.S. foreign policy framework. Legislation crafted in the Senate included the Voice of America Tibetan Broadcast Service, the Tibetan scholarship program, and the Special Envoy for Tibet, an initiative that would lead to a fully staffed office within the U.S. Department of State with a senior U.S. official serving as Special Coordinator for Tibetan Issues. Ms. Markey accompanied numerous U.S. Government delegations to Nepal and India for the purpose of monitoring U.S. programs and to meet with Tibetan leaders, including His Holiness the Dalai Lama. She personally received, on behalf of ICT, every Tibetan political prisoner whose release to the United States had been secured by the U.S. Government.

Ms. Markey presented Tibetan issues to international forums, included the UN Human Rights Council, was a frequent commentator on international news programs, and received a Human Rights Press Award from the Foreign Correspondents’ Club in Hong Kong for her outstanding contribution toward greater awareness and appreciation of human rights issues.

“For many years, Mary Beth has devoted substantial energies to the international struggle for human rights in Tibet and, in particular, has played a vital part in ICT’s efforts to promote a political solution for Tibet.” noted Lodi Gyari, Executive Chairman of the ICT Board of Directors. “The board is deeply appreciative of her exceptional service and her unshakeable faith in the just cause of Tibet. We wish her every success into the future.”

The Board of Directors has named Bhuchung K. Tsering, the current Vice President of Special Programs, Interim President while an intensive international search for a new President is conducted. Born in Tibet, Mr. Tsering has worked at The International Campaign for Tibet since 1995. He previously held positions in the Central Tibetan Administration in Dharamsala, India and the Office of His Holiness the Dalai Lama.