William & Mary

Update on Chrystie Flournoy Swiney

Chrystie Flournoy Swiney, class of 2002, is now working for the State Department at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, where she is Assistant Director and Special Counsel to Constitutional and Legal Affairs

To bolster the new Iraqi government, she provides legal advice and training to members of the executive and legislative branches. Her courses include International Law, Human Rights, and Women in Leadership.

Chrystie’s interest in the Middle East began at William & Mary, where she specialized in Islamic Studies under the guidance of Prof. Sonn. She graduated summa cum laude in 2002, with highest honors, winning the Van Horn Award for Best Senior Thesis, for “The Coexistence of Science and Religion” (done with Prof. Morreall). She was accepted by both Harvard Divinity School and Harvard Law School, but chose the Law School, where she specialized in International Law, Islamic Law, and Human Rights. After earning her JD degree in 2005, she went to Oxford University, where she earned her MPhil in Modern Middle Eastern Studies in 2007. Then she enrolled at Georgetown University for a Ph.D. in International Relations. Her current work in Baghdad will obviously give her lots to think about when she comes to write her Ph.D. dissertation.