Governor's Subcabinet For International Affairs
Created in 2001 by Executive Order 01.01.2001.20, as amended by
Executive Order 01.01.2005.24, the Subcabinet, chaired by the Secretary of State, encourages open communication and collaboration among Maryland’s state agencies. The Office of the Secretary of State’s International Division facilitates the subcabinet and conducts international protocol for the Executive Department.
- On June 3rd 2019 Maryland Secretary of the State John Wobensmith attended the National U.S. – Arab Chamber of Commerce (NUSACC) Eighth Annual Iftar Dinner in Washington, DC. Twenty Nine diplomats from 16 Arab Nations attended the event, including Chiefs of Mission from countries in North Africa and Arab Gulf.
- On November 8, 2018, Maryland Secretary of State John Wobensmith makes a courtesy visit at the Embassy of Bosnia and Herzegovina and meets with Ambassador Deputy Chief of Mission Milenko Misic.
- On November 26, 2018, President of University of Maryland, Baltimore Dr. Jay A. Perman and President of Pusan National University Yangsan Hospital Dr. Roh, Hwan-Jung signed a Memorandum of
Understanding in Baltimore regarding cooperation in the shared interests of life sciences and
- On October 1, Secretary Wobensmith met with Chinese Ambassador to the United States Cui Tiankai at the reception of the 69th Anniversary of the Founding of the People's Republic of China at the Chinese Embassy in
Washington, D.C. Secretary Wobensmith presented a proclamation signed by
Governor Larry Hogan.
- On June 25, Secretary Wobensmith met with the Speaker of the Lithuanian Parliament, Dr. Viktoras Pranckietis.
- On June 5th, officials form the State of Cordoba, Argentina visited Maryland for discussions on bilateral cooperation in the field of public safety and security. The delegation, accompanied by Alex Zunca, Latin American Volunteer Liaison for the Office of the Secretary of State, met with Deputy Secretary of State Luis Borunda in Annapolis. They were also hosted by officials from the Maryland State Police and the Maryland Fire Marshall's Office. The delegation from Argentina included Cordoba Secretary of Security, Diego Hak, Cordoba Chief of Police, Comisario General Gustavo Marcelo Vele, and Cordoba Deputy Director, General Pablo Adrian Arregues.
Meeting with Turkish Embassy and Maryland officials.
- On May 17, Secretary Wobensmith and representatives from the Maryland Department of Commerce met with Mr. Fatih Metin, Deputy Minister of Economy for the Turkish Embassy. The Turkish Embassy has been very involved and supportive of the Maryland-Kocaeli (Turkey) Sister State program, and this meeting helped to facilitate more involvement between Maryland and the Turkish Embassy in the near future.
- On April 9, the Office of the Secretary of State, Nancy Kopp, Maryland State Treasurer, and Ardath Cade, Chair of the Maryland-Leningrad Sister State Committee, met with four Russian women sponsored by the Center of Citizen Initiatives (CCI). CCI is a program with a long history of fostering people-to-people communication between Russian and American citizens, and the group was visiting several U.S. cities to advance this initiative. During the meeting, the group discussed the state of Russian-American relations, and the important role citizen diplomacy plays in world events despite national tensions. This fall, the Maryland-Leningrad Sister State relationship will be celebrating its 25th year.
- In late March, First Lady Yumi Hogan and Secretary Wobensmith presented a Governor’s Citation to Haley Skarupa, a Rockville native and member of the Olympic Gold medal winning Women’s Ice Hockey team in these past Winter Olympics.
- On March 18, the Jewish Museum of Maryland presented a film screening of “Desperate Hours,” the story of Turkish diplomats during WWII who upheld the standards of human decency to help those affected by the Holocaust. Members of both the Maryland-Kocaeli Turkey Sister State Committee and the Maryland-Israel Sister State Committee were present at the screening.
- On March 29, the Maryland-Anhui Sister State Committee and the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT) hosted the Export to China Symposium. Speakers included Embassy representatives from the Embassy of China, Commercial Office, the Maryland Department of Commerce, and the U.S. Department of Commerce. This Symposium helped to connect Maryland businesses with export opportunities throughout China, and provided information on Maryland-Anhui Promotion Week, set to take place in late May of this year.
- On March 30, the Office of the Secretary of State met with Representative Mensah from Bong County Liberia. Bong County and Maryland have an active Sister State relationship, and plans were made to collaborate on topics including educational exchanges and women’s issues.
- On March 16, the Maryland Office of the Secretary of State hosted 10 high school students from Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan. These students were able to visit Maryland through a highly selective application process that demonstrated their high achievement in the English language. Kanagawa Prefecture and the State of Maryland have the second-oldest Sister State relationship, which began in 1981.
- On March 12, representatives from the Maryland Department of Commerce, the South African Embassy, the KwaZulu-Natal International Trade and Investment Office, and the Maryland-KwaZulu-Natal Sister State Committee met in Baltimore to discuss business and investment opportunities. KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa and Maryland have held a Sister State relationship since 2015, and economic opportunities and exchanges have been one of the many highlights of the relationship.
Pictured: (left to right) Deputy Secretary Robert Finn, Guiguang Li, Deputy Director-General of Special Care and Settlement Bureau, Ministry of Civil Affairs of the People's Republic of China, Secretary George Owings, and Christoper Piscitelli, Director, Cemetery and Memorial Programs.
- On Monday, November 20th, the Maryland Department of Veterans Affairs hosted a delegation from China for a tour of the Maryland Veterans Cemetery in Crownsville. The delegation of 19 members represented the Ministry of Civil Affairs at both the central and provincial government levels. The delegation received an overview of the responsibilities of the Department of Veterans Affairs, as well as insight into state regulations and policies governing internment of veterans and services and programs available for veterans, the fallen, and their families.
Maryland resident Mr. Rafael Flores visited Puerto Rico in October to deliver aid to communities affected by Hurricane Maria. While in Puerto Rico, Mr. Flores visited with Speaker of the House Carlos Johnny Mendez and Fajardo Mayor Anibal Melendez Rivera.
- On August 25, Lt. Governor Rutherford met with El Salvador Foreign Minister Hugo Martinez in Annapolis to discuss economic and security-related issues. The Minister's delegation included Her Excellecny Claudia Canjura, Salvadoran Ambassador to the U.S. Maryland offices represented at the meeting included the Governor's Hispanic Commission, the Governor's Office of Crime Control and Prevention, the Governor's Office of Homeland Security, and the Maryland Office of the Secretary of State.
On September 5, Deputy Secretary of State Luis Borunda hosted members of the Latin American diplomatic corps at Oriole Park at Camden Yards in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month. Joining Maryland's Office of the Secretary of State at the event were representatives from the Governor's Office of Community Initiatives, and the embassies of Honduras, Costa Rica, Ecuador, and Bolivia.
On July 24, Secretary Wobensmith met with Chinese university students visiting the University of Maryland for its Global Leadership Program. The UMD Global Leadership program’s mission is to “build global knowledge by learning how to objectively analyze political, social, and economic components of international policy-making.
On July 14, Dr. James Fielder, Secretary of the Maryland Higher Education Commission, signed an MOU in Annapolis with the Government of Hungary regarding cooperation on higher education opportunities and information exchange.
- On August 9, the Office of the Secretary of State in conjunction with the Serbian American Business Leadership Council, and the U.S. Commercial Service- Trade Winds hosted a seminar highlighting business opportunities in Serbia for Maryland businesses. Among the speakers were Minister Goran Trivan, from the Serbian Ministry of Environmental Protection, Ambassador Djerdj Matkovic, Maryland Secretary of Environment Ben Grumbles and Maryland Secretary of Natural Resources Mark Belton.
- On July 19, Secretary Wobensmith and Deputy Secretary Borunda met with Governor Juan Schiaretti, Governor of Cordoba, Argentina
The Province of Cordoba and Maryland have engaged one another in the past in the sector of policing and public safety information exchange. Other areas of possible future bilateral programming discussed at the meeting included: higher education, technology, tourism, health care, and agriculture.
- World Teacher of the Year:
Secretary Wobensmith presented a Governor's Citation to the Prince George's County Public Schools World Teacher of the Year recipient, Mrs. Zennie Ann Torres-Acosta.