June July 7, President Obama announced his intent to Stephen J. Rapp to be Ambassador at Large for War Crimes Issues (S/WCI) at the Department of State.
Stephen Rapp has served as Prosecutor of the Special Court for Sierra Leone since January 2007, leading the prosecutions of former Liberian President Charles Taylor and other persons alleged to bear the greatest responsibility for the atrocities committed during the civil war in Sierra Leone. From 2001 to 2007, Rapp served as Senior Trial Attorney and Chief of Prosecutions at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, personally heading the trial team that achieved convictions of the principals of RTLM radio and Kangura newspaper—the first in history for leaders of the mass media for the crime of Incitement to Commit Genocide. Previously, he was United States Attorney for the Northern District of Iowa from 1993 to 2001. Prior to his tenure as U.S. Attorney, he had worked as an attorney in private practice and had served as Staff Director of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Juvenile Delinquency and as an elected member of the Iowa Legislature.
He received his JD degree from Drake University and his BA from Harvard College.