On May 24, President Obama announced his intent to nominate Ambassador Marcie B. Ries as the next Ambassador to the Republic of Bulgaria. The WH released the following brief bio:
Ambassador Marcie B. Ries, a career member of the Senior Foreign Service, class of Career-Minister, is
currently Deputy Assistant Secretary of State in the Bureau of Arms Control, Verification and Compliance. From 2008 to 2009, she was Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs. Previously, she served as Minister-Counselor for Political-Military Affairs at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad (2007-2008), U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Albania (2004-2007), and Chief of Mission at the U.S. Office in Pristina, Kosovo (2003-2004). She has also served as Director of the Office of United Nations Political Affairs in the Bureau of International Organizations (2001-2003) and as Political Counselor at the U.S. Embassy in London (1996-2000). Other overseas assignments include posts to the U.S. Mission to the European Union in Brussels; Ankara, Turkey; and Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.
She received a B.A. from Oberlin College and an M.A. from the School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University.
If confirmed, Ambassador Ries would succeed career diplomat James B. Warlick, Jr. who was appointed to the US Embassy in Sofia in 2009.
On April 12, New Europe Online citing local media reported that Sofia has received a request for agrément for a new Ambassador to Bulgaria.
According to the television sources, it is very probable that Ambassador Warlick will leave the country before the end of his mandate of three years. BTV also announces that the person to fill the post of US Ambassador in Bulgaria is expected to be a former representative of the States in Albania who is now a civil servant. The Bulgarian television also clarified that according to the webpage of the American Embassy in Teheran, there were only two women to hold the position of Ambassador in the last 10 years, namely Marisa Lino (1996-1999) and Marcie Ries (2004-2007).
Looks like these folks have excellent sources. Last week, Ambassador Warlick tweeted this:
Ambassador Warlick assumed charge of the embassy on January 21, 2010. By the time the new ambassador is confirmed by the Senate, his tenure in Sofia will be closer to 36 months.
A side note on this appointment – Ambassador Marcie B. Ries is one half of a former tandem couple who went on to become ambassadors: Ambassador Ries as then US Ambassador to Albania (2004-2007), and her husband, Charles Ries as then US Ambassador to Greece (2004-2007). Ambassador James Warlick is also one half of a current tandem couple serving as ambassadors. His wife, Mary Burce Warlick is the current US Ambassador to Serbia.