German Ambassador to Speak at U.Va. on April 16

April 09, 2009

April 10, 2009 — Klaus Scharioth, ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany to the United States, will visit the University of Virginia and deliver a public talk, "The Transatlantic Agenda: A German Perspective," on April 16 at 4:30 p.m. in the Rotunda Dome Room. The event is free and open to the public.

Scharioth 's visit is at the invitation of President John T. Casteen III and the recently founded U.Va. Center for German Studies. The occasion marks the first official visit of a German ambassador to Grounds.

Volker Kaiser, the center's director, said that the center, the Department of German and all the sponsors are proud to present the ambassador to the University and Charlottesville communities.

"It is a wonderful opportunity for him to engage our graduate and undergraduate students from a variety of disciplines in a dialogue about Germany and German studies," he said.

Scharioth will attend a private luncheon with a group of faculty and top U.Va. administrators, followed by a tour of the Grounds. He also will meet with students and invited guests at a reception and discuss, "Warum Deutsch(land) heute?" ("Why German(y) today?"

Scharioth was appointed ambassador to the U.S. in 2006. Prior to that, he served the German minister of foreign affairs at the embassy in Quito, Ecuador, and at Germany's permanent mission to the United Nations.

In the German Ministry of Foreign Affairs, he has held posts in the press and secretary's offices, served on the policy planning staff and in the international law division. He also was director of the private office to the NATO secretary general in Brussels, dealing with issues of security policy. In the Foreign Ministry, he held posts as head of the Defense and Security Policy Division and as head of the International Security and North American Directorate.

Born in Essen, Germany, Scharioth studied law in Bonn, Freiburg and Geneva. He studied political science, sociology and psychology at the University of Idaho and earned an M.A. and M.A.L.D degree from the Fletcher School at Tufts University, where his studies focused on international relations, international law and international economics.

The event is sponsored by the Center for German Studies, the Ambassadors Forum of the Office of the Vice Provost for International Programs, the College of Arts & Sciences and others.

For information, contact Manuela Achilles at 434-924-3530 or

— By Jane Ford