Susan Rice and Condoleezza Rice certainly have things in common. Their careers in politics and their last names may suggest that the two are related, but is there any truth in that claim?
Susan Rice and Condoleezza Rice are not related, despite sharing the same surname. The political figures hail from different states and do not share any family ties.
Learn more about the life and careers of Susan Rice and Condoleezza Rice below.
Who is Susan Rice?
Susan Rice was born in Washington during the 1960s.
Rather than let the racial prejudice that existed become a barrier to her success, she harnessed it to help her succeed. “[It] taught me in a very unusual way not to allow that to diminish my own sense of self,” she says.
She studied at the esteemed universities of Stanford and Oxford, before getting her first government role at the age of 28. Her first child, she says “Learned to walk in the halls of the State Department.”
A difficult moment in her career came just days after four Americans were killed in Libya, and questions were being asked of the government.
Acting as the US Ambassador for the United Nations, Rice stood in for Hilary Clinton, then the Secretary of State, and appeared on a series of TV shows.
Rice was a candidate to become the next Secretary of State but withdrew her name after the criticism that stemmed from the TV appearances.
Under Obama, she became National Security Advisor in 2013 and was a key voice in the creation of the Iran Nuclear Deal.
President Trump famously pulled out of the deal a few years on, a decision which she describes as “reckless”.
A 2018 Tweet sparked rumors that Rice was going to run for Senate, but this failed to materialize.
Who is Condoleezza Rice?
Condoleezza Rice grew up in Birmingham, Alabama, as the daughter of a Church minister.
Her parents, she says, “thought of education as a kind of armor against racism.” She certainly is well educated, with a Ph.D. in political science and 11 honorary doctorates.
Like Susan Rice, she studied at Stanford. She went on to attain a teaching role and spent several years as a professor, though she also pursued her political ambitions.
Condoleezza continues to work closely with the university and now acts as the Denning Professor in Global Business and the Economy at Stanford’s School of Business.
In 2000, acting under President Bush, she became the National Security Advisor – the role that would later be held by Susan Rice. In 2004, she became the 66th Secretary of State.
Throughout her career, she had advocated the promotion of global freedoms. “We seek to use America’s diplomatic power to help foreign citizens to better their own lives, and to build their own nations, and to transform their own futures,” she stated at the Georgetown School of Foreign Office.
She was the first African-American woman to achieve the position. Inclusivity, she says, creates a healthy environment.
“Dealing with people who are different than you are…makes you a better person as a result.”
Are the Two Related?
There is no evidence to suggest that Susan Rice and Condoleezza Rice are related.
Susan grew up in Washington D.C while Condoleezza hails from Alabama.
The two women are often mistaken for each other, as Susan explained during an appearance on ‘Real Time with Bill Maher’. She said, “We were both national security adviser, we’re both black women named Rice.”
On one occasion, Susan was mistaken for Condoleezza while on official business. During a visit to China, while working for President Obama, where she met with President XI, a TV news channel made the blunder.
“There’s a whole big spread in the nightly news,” Susan told Bill Maher. “And they say, you know, Susan Rice is in China to see President Xi and they put up Condi’s picture.”