Gretchen is a former senior American diplomat who served at the U.S. State Department for thirty-two years.  Her overseas postings were in Pakistan, Syria, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and the UK.  She worked directly for three Secretaries of State and concluded her career by supporting the Summer Olympic Games in London UK in 2012.  She is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Stanford University in 1978 with a degree in International Relations, and has a postgraduate diploma in Asian Art from SOAS at the University of London, studying Islamic, Chinese and Japanese and Korean art.