Edythe M. Holbrook’s professional career has spanned journalism, cultural diplomacy, educational exchanges and foreign policy. She is currently a Trustee and Vice President of the National Committee on American Foreign Policy, chairs its Program and Membership Committee and in 2010 launched its 21st Century Leaders Council whose members have actively participated in or led NCAFP programs, including panels, briefings, roundtables, salons and Track II sessions.
Most recently, Ms. Holbrook has advised IMG Artists on promoting the career of virtuoso violinist Mikhail Simonyan whom she discovered in Novosibirsk, Russia, the Baltic Youth Philharmonic, the Russian National Orchestra, Russia’s first independent orchestra, and the Afghan Youth Orchestra which made its first U.S. appearance in February at Carnegie Hall and the Kennedy Center.
In 1991, Ms Holbrook founded and served as President of the American Russian Young Artists Orchestra (ARYO) which, after the collapse of the Soviet Union became the successor to the American Soviet Youth Orchestra, the first jointly produced US-Soviet cultural exchange of which she became Executive Director in 1989. As President of ARYO, Ms. Holbrook initiated a partnership with Bard College and enlisted the support of a prestigious Board of Directors chaired by Henry Luce III, which included prominent American and Russian business leaders. With counterparts in Russia, ARYO produced annual world tours that crossed the United States, Russia, the former republics and Central Europe. She also spearheaded the first-ever residency of an American musician in a Russian orchestra.
Ms. Holbrook’s earlier career included launching AFS Intercultural Programs’ first International Communications Division, collaborating with her father in researching and writing a biography of James V. Forrestal, our first Secretary of Defense; reporting for the Roll Call on Capitol Hill and six years at The Wilson Center in Washington, D.C. under Dr. James H. Billington. She has served on the boards of the Citizen Exchange Council, the Windham World Affairs Council, and the Alliance of Russian and American Women. Ms. Holbrook is a graduate of Bryn Mawr College.