Senate committee reviews Frankfort native for U.N. post

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FRANKFORT, Ky. (WTVQ) – A Frankfort native and University of Kentucky graduate took a big step Wednesday toward putting Kentucky on the world stage.

Jennifer Yue Barber, who now is an attorney with Frost Brown Todd in Louisville, testified before the U.S. Senate’s Foreign Relations Committee for her appointment to the United Nations Economic and Social Council as ambassador.

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Barber’s appointment likely won’t be approved until September or October but she is expected to be confirmed. President Donald Trump nominated her late last year. (Read her testimony here  Barber_Testimony  .)

If approved, she will join Kentuckian Kelly Craft who is U.S. ambassador to the U.N. Barber would serve as an alternate to Craft is necessary.

“Jennifer’s record of encouraging economic opportunity in Kentucky will serve her well as she works to help advance cooperation, development and prosperity throughout the international community,” U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell said of Barber’s nomination.

McConnell introduced her to the members the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee to serve on the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations, with the rank of ambassador, as well as an alternate representative of the U.S. to the Sessions of the General Assembly of the United Nations.

“As nations around the globe prepare to celebrate the UN’s 75th anniversary, American leadership is as important as ever. Alongside our fellow Kentuckian, Ambassador Kelly Craft, Jennifer has the experiences and talents to advance our national values on the world stage,” McConnell said.

“Jennifer and her family are a wonderful example of the promise of American opportunity. Her parents, Kenneth and Laura, left China as teenagers seeking a better, freer life in America. They found that opportunity in Frankfort, Kentucky.

“Kenneth and Laura poured themselves into a small business. Through long hours and hard days, the Yue family built a new future. At age seven, Jennifer began pitching in and learning the rewards of hard work and never giving up. She carried those virtues into every aspect of her life,” McConnell added.

Barber focuses her law practice on state and local tax, economic development, and government affairs. She earned her bachelor’s degree and Juris Doctor from the University of Kentucky.

She has served on UK’s Board of Trustees, the Kentucky Chamber’s Tax Working Group, U.S. Bank’s Advisory Board, the Kentucky State Fair Board, Board of Directors for the Kentucky Bar Foundation, and Louisville Bar Association.  She has been named to Best Lawyers®, Kentucky Rising Stars®, and Martindale Hubbell’s Registry of Preeminent Women Lawyers.

She was honored by Business First of Louisville as its “Enterprising Woman to Watch” in 2015 and named to Louisville’s “Forty Under 40” in 2011.

She lives in Louisville with her husband, Andy, and two daughters.

Barber is a graduate of the University of Kentucky where she earned her bachelor’s and law degrees. She began her career by clerking in the Office of the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Kentucky.