The top-ranking woman in the Iowa Legislature leaves that job today, bound for a bigger post in a much warmer climate. Senate President Mary Kramer, a republican from Clive, is leaving to become U.S. Ambassador to Barbados and the eastern Caribbean. Kramer says her role is to build a “trust” relationship with leaders of countries in the region. Kramer says her two “missions” are to foster human rights and enhance “the American values of liberty, family and the respect for the rule of law.” Kramer and her husband, Kay, are both retired from their private-sector careers.Kramer says she and her husband will “live in a place we’ve never visited in a home we’ve never seen, except from pictures.” She says it’s a great adventure, at this stage in their married life. Kramer, on Monday, admitted to her colleagues in the Iowa Senate that leaving is a bit bittersweet. Kramer says her last moments in the legislature have been harder than she thought they’d be. Kramer’s last official act will occur today when she helps swear in her successor as Senate President. Jeff Lamberti, a Republican from Ankeny, has been selected by his Republican colleagues to take over the job.
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