2020 Nora Dempsey Headshot.jpg

Nora Dempsey

Senior Advisor of Innovation

U.S. Department of State

Nora Dempsey is currently the Senior Advisor for Innovation in the State Department's Office of eDiplomacy. Her diplomatic career has been focused on innovation, and creating partnerships, whether between fractious neighboring countries in Africa or the Middle East, or between Universities focused on the future potential of international collaboration. 


Ms. Dempsey was a member of U.S. Middle East peace team 1993-1995, the Director of African Affairs at the National Security Council 1999-2000, the U.S. Consul General in Florence, Italy and the founder of SAPER, an international biotech research center in Tuscany. Director of the State Department’s Advanced Arabic Institute in Tunisia 2008-2012, she is now focused on using technology as an innovative diplomatic tool around the world. As Director of the Virtual Student Federal Service (VSFS) during the pandemic of 2020, Ms.  Dempsey "saved" 200 cancelled in-person internships by taking them virtual, and welcomed a record setting 8,000 student applicants for the 2020-2021 academic year.  

Nora has a BA and BFA from Carnegie-Mellon University, and an MBA from SMU in Tunisia.