Strobe Talbott's parents were Helen Josephine Large Talbott and Nelson Talbott. He was married to Brooke Shearer until her death in May, 2009. They had two sons Devin Talbott and Adrian Talbott. Strobe Talbot married Barbara Lazear Ascher in 2015.
Talbott studied Russian literature at Yale. At Oxford University, Talbott was Bill Clinton's roommate (where they were both Rhodes Scholars). Talbott gained prominence after he "translated and edited the memoirs of former Soviet leader Nikita S. Khrushchev. The book, published from a smuggled manuscript after Khrushchev's fall from power, was considered a publishing coup and a major contribution to understanding the U.S. government's Cold War adversary."
Strobe Talbott was founding director of the Yale Center for the Study of Globalization in 2000. Before that, he served in the State Department from 1993 to 2001, first as Ambassador-at-large and special adviser to the Secretary of State for the new independent states of the former Soviet Union, then as Deputy Secretary of State for seven years. Strobe Talbott joined the Clinton administration "after 21 years as an award-winning journalist for Time magazine, where he was editor-at-large, foreign affairs columnist, Washington bureau chief, State Department correspondent and White House correspondent."
Before working in D.C., the LA Times reported in 1993 that Strobe Talbott "devoted his entire career to foreign policy, especially concerning Russia."
Former Washington Post journalist Pete Earley wrote "Comrade J: The Untold Secrets of Russia’s Master Spy in America After the End of the Cold War" about the late Sergei Tretyakov, who was born Oct. 5, 1956 in Moscow "and rose quickly through the ranks to become the second-in-command of the KGB in New York City between 1995 to 2000 [and] oversaw all Russian spy operations against the US and its allies in New York City and within the United Nations." Tretyakov defected to the United States in October 2000. In his book, Earley alleges that Strobe Talbott was "manipulated by a Russian official working for Russian intelligence in order to get information about U.S. foreign policy."
- Brookings Institution website: Board of Trustees (accessed on Jan 7, 2010)
- Strobe Talbott Expected to Get State Dept. Post (accessed on May 21, 2016)
- http://www.yale.edu/opa/arc-ybc/v29.n11/story1.html The Yale Center for the Study of Globalization
- http://www.state.gov/s/p/fapb/185600.htm BIOGRAPHY: Strobe Talbott] (accessed on May 21, 2016)
- Sergei Tretyakov, Russian Spy ‘Comrade J,’ Dead at 53 (accessed on May 24, 2016)
- Comrade J: The Untold Secrets of Russia's Master Spy in America After the End of the Cold War (accessed on May 24, 2016)
- Former Clinton Official Named as Russian Dupe (accessed on May 24, 2016)