Madeleine Albright, who as the first female Secretary of State un U.S. history blazed a trail for the likes of Hillary Clinton and Condoleezza Rice, has died of cancer, according to a statement from her family. She was 84.

Albright had a prestigious career even before President Bill Clinton made Albright the first female Secretary of State. She worked under Zbigniew Brzezinski on the National Security Council in the Carter Administration. When Bill Clinton was elected in 1992, Albright helped assemble the new administration’s National Security Council. Clinton soon appointed her U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, a position she held until 1997, when she became Secretary of State. Albright served as Secretary of State until Clinton left office in 2001.

Her family announced the news on Twitter today.

“We have lost a loving mother, grandmother, sister, aunt and friend,” their statement said, as well as a “tireless champion of democracy and human rights.”

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