Ambassador Julie Turner was sworn in as the U.S. Special Envoy for North Korean Human Rights Issues on October 13, 2023. Ambassador Turner is globally recognized an expert in the area of human rights and democracy and has worked over the past 20 years to strengthen democratic institutions and promote human rights throughout the East Asia and Pacific Region. Most recently, she served as the Office Director in the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor (DRL) Office of East Asia and the Pacific at the U.S. Department of State and previously was the Director for Southeast Asia at the National Security Council. During her time at the State Department, she served as the special assistant to the first U.S. Special Envoy for North Korean Human Rights and worked as a program analyst in the Bureau of Information Resource Management Office of eDiplomacy. As a career civil service employee and former Presidential Management Fellow, Ambassador Turner has dedicated her career to advancing human rights around the world. Ambassador Turner is a graduate of Pepperdine University and the University of Maryland.