Officially In: Douglas Silliman — From Iraq to Kuwait

— Domani Spero

On December 12, President Obama announced his intent to nominate Douglas Alan Silliman as the next Ambassador to the State of Kuwait. The WH released the following brief bio:

Douglas Alan Silliman, a career member of the Foreign Service, Class of Minister-Counselor, was most recently Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, Iraq, a position he held since 2012.  From 2011 to 2012, he was Counselor for Political Affairs in Baghdad.  Before serving in Iraq, he was Deputy Chief of Mission in Ankara, Turkey from 2008 to 2011.  Mr. Silliman was Deputy Director and then Director of the Office of Southern European Affairs in the Department of State from 2004 to 2007. From 2000 to 2004, he was Political Counselor at the U.S. Embassy in Amman, Jordan.  His previous assignments in the Department of State include Regional Officer for the Middle East in the Office of the Coordinator for Counterterrorism, Desk Officer in the Office of Soviet Union Affairs, Lebanon Desk Officer and Staff Assistant to the Assistant Secretary for Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs.  His overseas assignments with the Department of State include Political Officer in Islamabad, Pakistan, Visa Officer in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, and Political Officer in Tunis, Tunisia.  He joined the Foreign Service in 1984.

He received a B.A. from Baylor University and an M.A. from the George Washington University.

This is Mr. Silliman’s first ambassadorial appointment.  If confirmed, he would succeed career diplomat, Matthew H. Tueller who was appointed to post in 2011. Kuwait is one of the 42 posts where the appointees have traditionally come from the career service.All of the last 17 ambassadors appointed as chief of mission at the U.S. Embassy in Kuwait came from the Foreign Service.

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Officially In: Peter A. Selfridge—From WH to State Dept’s Chief of Protocol

— Domani Spero

On December 12, President Obama announced his intent to nominate Peter A. Selfridge as the next Chief of Protocol, with the rank of Ambassador during his tenure of service at the Department of State. The WH released the following brief bio:

Peter A. Selfridge is currently the Deputy Assistant to the President and Director of Advance & Operations at the White House, a position he has held since 2011.  He previously served as Special Assistant to the President and Deputy Director of Advance in 2011, and Director of Advance for the Vice President from 2009 to 2011.  Mr. Selfridge served as Deputy Director of Advance for both the Presidential Transition Office and Obama for America from 2008 to early 2009.  Prior to this, he worked as the Los Angeles City Director at the Clinton Climate Initiative and as a Public Affairs Consultant from 2005 to 2007.  From 2003 to 2005, Mr. Selfridge served as Associate Director in the Office of Scheduling and Advance for John Kerry for President.  He was Senior Associate and Associate at Citigate Communications/Citigate Sard Verbinnen from 2001 to 2003.  Mr. Selfridge was a Media Logistics Coordinator for the Gore-Lieberman campaign in 2000 and from 1997 to 2000, he served as a Policy Analyst for The City of New York, Department of Citywide Administrative Services.  Mr. Selfridge was Director of Scheduling Correspondence and Deputy Director in the Office of Scheduling and Advance at the White House from 1995 to 1997.  From 1993 to 1995, he served as Legislative Correspondent and Staff Assistant in the office of Senator Tom Harkin.

Mr. Selfridge received a B.A. from the University of Iowa and an M.I.P.P. from Johns Hopkins University.

If confirmed, Mr. Selfridge would succeed Capricia Marshall who was appointed Chief of Protocol from from 2009 until her departure this past summer.  When her departure was reported by WaPo in May 2013, Reliable Source noted that she was the “most visible link between State’s tight-knit group of Clinton loyalists and the Obama White House” and one of the last of the Hillary Clinton insiders at the State Department to depart.  This Daily Beast farewell piece says that one of her accomplishments was “Creating the Patrons of Diplomacy Program with Secretary Clinton and raising $20 million to endow the elegant Diplomatic Reception Rooms.”

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Related item:

December 12, 2013 | President Obama Announces More Key Administration Posts

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Officially In: Robert A. Wood — from USEU to the Conference on Disarmament

— Domani Spero

On December 12, President Obama announced his intent to nominate Robert A. Wood, for Rank of Ambassador during his tenure of service as United States Representative to the Conference on Disarmament. The WH released the following brief bio:

Robert A. Wood, a Career Member of the Foreign Service, Class of Minister-Counselor, is Chargé d’Affaires at

English: Robert A. Wood is the State Departmen...

Robert A. Wood was  a State Department’s Deputy Spokesman and Deputy Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

the U.S. Mission to the European Union.  From 2010 to 2013, he served as Deputy Chief of Mission of the U.S. Mission to the International Organizations in Vienna, Austria.  From 2008 to 2010, Mr. Wood was the State Department’s Deputy Spokesman and Deputy Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs.  From 2004 to 2008, he served as the Press Attaché at the U.S. Embassy in Berlin, Germany.  Prior to his assignment to Berlin, he was Deputy Spokesman at the U.S. Mission to the United Nations in New York from 2001 to 2004.  Mr. Wood has been a Foreign Service Officer with the U.S. Department of State and the former U.S. Information Agency since 1988.  In Washington, Mr. Wood has worked as a public affairs advisor for the Bureau of African Affairs, as a Special Assistant to the Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs, and in several positions dealing with the Balkans.  Mr. Wood has also served in public affairs positions in Mexico City, Mexico; Lagos, Nigeria; Islamabad, Pakistan; and Pretoria, South Africa.

He received a B.A. from The City University of New York.

This is Mr. Wood’s first ambassadorial appointment. If confirmed, he would succeed Laura E. Kennedy who was United States Representative to the Conference on Disarmament at USUN in Geneva from March 2010-May 2013.

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Related item:

December 12, 2013|  President Obama Announces More Key Administration Posts