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Sand, sea and endless sky of Qatar comes to South Dakota

Diana Untermeyer
Diana Untermeyer

Qatar, a country jutting off the Arabian peninsula into the Persian Gulf, stands as a stable and relatively open society in a region mired in conflict. Qatar is also a vital military and economic partner for the United States.

Author and Wyoming native Diana Kendrick Untermeyer brings her story of living in and traveling across Qatar to a South Dakota audience at 7 p.m. March 19 at the South Dakota Art Museum.

Her visit is part of the “Engage America Series” offered by the World Affairs Councils of America in collaboration with the Embassy of Qatar and organized by the South Dakota World Affairs Council.

Untermeyer lived in Qatar for three years while her husband served as the U.S. ambassador. While there, she became active in women’s and children’s programs along with getting involved in conservation, arts and health. She also took part in numerous equestrian sports, winning the top endurance rider award for the 2006-07 endurance season.


While working on her book, “Qatar: Sand, Sea and Sky,” Untermeyer crisscrossed the country with photographer Henry Dallal, sometimes on horseback, capturing the magic of the desert and the subtle hues of the sea and endless sky.

“Being the wife of the U.S. ambassador gave me a unique opportunity to participate in Qatar at a pivotal time in its transition to a modern, knowledge-based society,” said Untermeyer.

More than anything, the time I spent on horseback galloping through the desert or sitting with riders in a traditional woven tent around a shared platter of food brought me into contact with a broad cross section of Qatari society. I look forward to sharing my story of Qatar with a South Dakota audience.”

Untermeyer will sign copies of her book, “Qatar: Sand, Sea and Sky,” which will be available to purchase at the event.

For more information, email SDWAC or call (605) 688-5416.