Ruchira Kamboj is an Indian diplomat of IFS cadre who became the first female envoy to take charge as Indias Permanent Representative to the United Nations on 21 June 2022. A senior diplomat, she has served as the Indian Ambassador to Bhutan, High Commissioner of India to South Africa, Permanent Representative of India to UNESCO, and Chief of Protocol.Growing up as the daughter of an army officer, Ruchira Kamboj attended school in different cities in Delhi, Baroda, and Jammu.Throughout her childhood, she paid heed to her fathers adamant insistence on punctuality and dressing smartly.After completing her formal education, she appeared in Civil Services Examination in 1987 and became All India womens topper of the batch. She was also the topper of the 1987 IFS batch. Cover photo of the Competition Success Review, August 1987 featuring Ruchira Kamboj, the all-India womens topper, Civil Services.From 1989 to 1991, she was posted as Third Secretary at the Embassy of India, Paris, during which she learned French.In 1991, she returned to Delhi and served as Under Secretary in the Europe West Division of Indias Ministry of External Affairs till 1996, dealing with France, the UK, the BENELUX countries, Italy, Spain, and Portugal. During this time, she also handled Indias relationship with the Commonwealth of Nations and represented India at the 14th Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, held in October 1995 in Auckland, New Zealand.From 1996 to 1999, she served as First Secretary (Economic and Commercial) and Head of Chancery at the Indian High Commission in Port Louis, Mauritius. In 1997, she assisted Prime Minister IK Gujral in his visit to South Africa, where she was sent on special duty. In 1998, she closely supervised the State Visit of Prime Minister Deve Gowda to Mauritius.After returning to Delhi, she initially assumed the position of Deputy Secretary and later became Director in charge of Foreign Service Personnel and Cadre in the Ministry of External Affairs (June 1999-March 2002).From 2002 to 2005, she served as a Counsellor at Indias Permanent Mission to the United Nations in New York. In this capacity, she dealt with various political issues including UN Peacekeeping, UN Security Council reform, the Middle East crisis, etc.In 2006, she was deputed as Indias Consul General in Cape Town, South Africa, a position that she served till 2009. During her tenure as the Consul General, she worked in close liaison with the Parliament of South Africa.