Senior Policy Directory, International Centre for Missing and Exploited Children
Maura Harty is the Senior Policy Director of the International Centre for Missing and Exploited Children (ICMEC) in Alexandria, Virginia. ICMEC promotes the safety and well-being of children through activism, policy development, and multinational coordination. ICMEC’s programs and initiatives are uniting the world and providing international solutions to the problems of child abduction and exploitation. Ambassador Harty is an experienced diplomat who served her country for 27 years as a Foreign Service Officer with the U.S. Department of State. During her tenure there, Ambassador Harty served as Special Assistant to Secretary of State George P. Shultz, Executive Assistant to Secretary Warren Christopher, U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Paraguay, and Executive Secretary of the Department under Secretary of State Colin Powell. Overseas postings included Mexico, Colombia, and Spain. A career consular officer, Harty served as Assistant Secretary of State for Consular Affairs from 2002 to 2008, bringing change in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks and creating a strong leadership culture among that Bureau’s 10,000 person workforce to more readily respond to those changes.
An expert in crisis management and issues affecting the welfare of American citizens abroad, Ambassador Harty created the Office of Children’s Issues at the Department of State to address the challenges of intercountry adoption and international parental child abduction. Since its inception, that Office has helped secure the return of hundreds of abducted American citizen children. Harty is the recipient of several Meritorious and Superior Honor awards from the Department of State, as well as the Department’s Distinguished Service award and is a two-time recipient of the President’s Meritorious Service award. She is a Life Member of the Alpha Phi Omega National Service Fraternity, a Board member of the Association for Diplomatic Studies and Training and a member of the Washington Institute of Foreign Affairs. Ambassador Harty is married to James Larner, a Senior Forensic Document Examiner with the Secret Service. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service, Washington, D.C.