Julie Finley was the United States Ambassador to the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE). She was nominated by President George W. Bush.
Finley attended Vassar College and later worked for several media organizations, including NBC's Office of Corporate Affairs, ABC News and the Washington Post. She also worked for syndicated columnist Joseph Kraft.
Finley has been active in Republican politics for many years and served the party in a number of capacities. She was the Washington, D.C., Republican Party Chairman from 1992 through 2000 and the D.C. Republican National Committeewoman from 2000 to 2004. Finley also served as National Finance Co-Chairman for the Bush-Cheney 2004 campaign for Washington, D.C., and as Co-Chairman of Team 100, the major fundraising arm for the Republican National Committee, from 1997 through 2004.
In November 2005, in response to a report that press freedoms in Kazakhstan were being violated by President Nursultan Nazarbayev, Finley made a statement that, according to reporter C.J. Chivers of the New York Times, seemed to dismiss the significance of the crackdown on the press. Addressing a Kazakh official in a speech during an OSCE session in Vienna, Finley stated, “When I was in Kazakhstan a couple of weeks ago I had the interesting pleasure of reading some of this [sic] newspapers that have been seized. Maybe you saved some readers some waste of time, anyway.”
The U.S. State Department had been pushing Nazarbayev to respect press freedoms, but that message "became mixed" when Finley made her comment, Chivers wrote. The Times reported that the transcript of the speech was removed from the American mission’s website but had already been circulated independently by Western diplomats. Finley declined to comment to the Times about her statement, though a colleague said that the quote had been ad libbed and did not reflect the Ambassador's "true feelings."
- "Julie Finley". The Progressive Government. Retrieved 2008-03-16.
- "Julie Finley - Biography". United States Department of State. 2005-11-17. Archived from the original on 2008-03-12. Retrieved 2008-03-16.
- Chivers, C.J. (2008-02-03). "Seeking a Path in Democracy’s Dead End". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-03-16.