Sports is a “useful tool” in diplomacy that helps to “engage foreign publics and connect people all over the world,” Michelle Kwan, a five-time world figure-skating champion and the first public diplomacy envoy for the State Department, says on this week’s episode of “Conversations with Nicholas Kralev.”
Kwan talks about her trips as an envoy and meeting with athletes and youth in foreign countries, sharing her experience training for and participating in Olympic Games and World Championships — and the impact that has on mutual understanding. “When I made that transition, I looked back at my figure-skating career and realized that I was engaged in citizen diplomacy for many years,” she says.
She also remembers being brought up in two cultures by her parents, who moved from Hong Kong to the United States before Michelle was born, and speaking English and Chinese equally well as a child.
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