Former Thunderbird President Receives 2012 “Woman of the Year” Award

March 21, 2013
Ambassador Barbara Barrett honored by Valley Leadership for her service to the community

Ambassador Barbara Barrett, former Interim President of Thunderbird School of Global Management, was honored today with Valley Leadership’s 2012 “Woman of the Year” award for her distinguished service to the community.

“Starting with her participation in Valley Leadership Class I, Barbara has proven her commitment to our community over many years of leadership,” said Sue Glawe, Selection Committee co-chair. “Her list of accomplishments is a shining example for our community.”

Among her many accomplishments, Ambassador Barrett is President and CEO of Triple Creek Guest Ranch, perennially ranked among the top hotels in the world. In January, she was appointed a member of the Smithsonian’s Board of Regents. In 2012, she held the position of Interim President of Thunderbird School of Global Management, the world’s No. 1-ranked school for international business. Previously, she was Ambassador to Finland, Senior Advisor to the U.S. Mission to the United Nations, CEO of the American Management Association, a Harvard Fellow who taught Leadership and Chairman of the U.S. Advisory Commission on Public Diplomacy.

At Thunderbird she served on the Board of Trustees for eighteen years and hosted top level international speakers including President Mikail Gorbachev, The Right Honorable Kim Campbell, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and many other world leaders and diplomats. As a member of the U.S.-Afghan Women’s Council, Ambassador Barrett founded Project Artemis to train and mentor Afghan women entrepreneurs at Thunderbird.

Also honored by Valley Leadership today was Tom Ambrose, who received the “Man of the Year” award.

Valley Leadership has been honoring prestigious men and women with this award for 63 years, with U.S. Sen. Barry Goldwater being the inaugural Man of the Year.

More information about the award is available at:

Media may contact Virginia Mungovan at or (602) 978-7081 for more information.


About Thunderbird School of Global Management

Thunderbird is the world’s No. 1-ranked school of international business, with nearly 70 years of experience in equipping global leaders with the business skills and global mindset necessary to create sustainable prosperity worldwide. For more about Thunderbird, visit

About Valley Leadership

Valley Leadership is a nonprofit, leadership-development organization with the mission to enhance the abilities of individuals to serve and strengthen our communities. Established in 1978, Valley Leadership has been cultivating passionate and engaged leaders in our community for over 30 years. Valley Leadership: Connecting…Learning…Leading.