WASHINGTON – President Joe Biden will eulogize former Secretary of State Madeleine Korbel Albright at her funeral on Wednesday, April 27, at 11 a.m. ET at Washington National Cathedral. Former President Bill Clinton and former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton will also speak at the funeral, along with Albright’s three daughters. Musical tributes will be performed by Chris Botti, Judy Collins, and Herbie Hancock. 

Secretary Albright was a professor, author, diplomat, and businesswoman who served as the 64th Secretary of State of the United States. Secretary Albright was appointed by former President Bill Clinton as the first female Secretary of State in 1997 and became, at that time, the highest-ranking woman in the history of the U.S. government. Secretary Albright had a long connection with Washington National Cathedral and its schools. At the time of her passing on March 23, 2022, she was a member of the Cathedral Chapter, the governing body of the Cathedral. 

All media wishing to cover the funeral must request press credentials from the Cathedral in advance by filling out the form at this link. All requests for credentials are due by Friday, April 22 at 5 p.m. ET, and determinations for these requests will be made on Monday, April 25. For broadcast media, the network pool will provide coverage; all pool subscribers should contact the pool for broadcast coverage needs.  The Cathedral will also have an HD livestream of the service at this link, which all media are free to use with credit to Washington National Cathedral.

“Secretary Albright was a trailblazing diplomat, a fierce advocate for women and a dear friend of this Cathedral,” said The Very Rev. Randolph Marshall Hollerith, dean of Washington National Cathedral. “We look forward to not only celebrating her legendary accomplishments, but also to recalling the deep and abiding faith that shaped the extraordinary story of this beloved child of God.”

Born Marie Jana Korbelová in 1937 in Prague, Czechoslovakia, Albright and her family were forced to flee to London when Nazi Germany invaded the land of her birth. They returned to Czechoslovakia after the war only to be forced into exile again by the 1948 communist coup. This time, they settled in the United States, eventually moving to Denver, where Secretary Albright grew up. Albright received a B.A. with Honors from Wellesley College, and Master’s and doctoral degrees from Columbia University.

At the beginning of her career, Secretary Albright served as Chief Legislative Assistant to U.S. Senator Edmund S. Muskie. In 1978, she was invited to join the Carter administration, where she served as the National Security Council’s congressional liaison. She would join the Woodrow Wilson International Center of Scholars and the academic staff of Georgetown University. In 1993, she was nominated by President Clinton as the US. Ambassador to the United Nations. 

Following the Clinton Administration, Secretary Albright was a prolific speaker and author. She founded the Albright Stonebridge Group, served as a Professor in the practice of diplomacy at Georgetown University, and chaired the National Democratic Institute. In May 2012, President Obama awarded her the Presidential Medal of Freedom. She is survived by her three daughters, Anne, Alice and Katie, and six grandchildren, and her sister and brother. 

The funeral of Secretary Albright will be by invitation-only, and only those with tickets will be authorized to attend. All safety measures will be followed to ensure the health of the staff and guests in attendance. Members of the press must register at this link to request press credentials in order to be considered for access to the funeral service. 

Eleanor Donohue, 202-704-5840, [email protected]


About Washington National Cathedral
Grounded in the reconciling love of Jesus Christ, Washington National Cathedral is a house of prayer for all people, conceived by our founders to serve as a great church for national purposes.