A number of very distinguished professional diplomats have been director general, plus some time-serving mediocrities. While in the Foreign Service, I was privileged to know a few of the better incumbents, but even they did not play a true leadership role in the Service nor enjoyed much recognition among the ranks of embassy and State Department staffs. The stature of the director general’s office has sadly declined over many years. It is certainly not the job to which the best of the Foreign Service aspire.
Foreign Service leadership gap?
E. Wayne Merry
The Washington Times, February 26, 2009
E. Wayne Merry was a career Foreign Service Officer and is now a senior associate at the American Foreign Policy Council in Washington, D.C.
The last five Directors General of the Foreign Service are below. Click here for the full list of Directors General.
- Marc Grossman (June 19, 2000 – 2001) WJC
- Ruth A. Davis (June 15, 2001 June 30, 2003) GWB
- W. Robert Pearson (October 7, 2003 February 27, 2006) GWB
- George McDade Staples (May 25, 2006 – June 27, 2007) GWB
- Harry K. Thomas, Jr. (September 21, 2007 – ) GWB