Adm Harry B. Harris Jr – From PACOM Commander to U.S. Ambassador to Australia

Posted: 2:50 am ET

 

The WH announced last week the President’s intent to nominate PACOM’s Admiral Harry B. Harris, Jr. to be the next U.S. Ambassador to Australia. If confirmed, Admirall Harris would succeed political appointee Morrell John Berry (1959–) who was Ambassador to Canberra from 2013–2016. The last career diplomat appointed to Australia was Edward William Gnehm Jr. (1944–) who served from 2000–2001.

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SFRC Clears Eric M. Ueland (M), and Peter H. Vrooman (Rwanda)

Posted: 3:37 am ET

 

On February 7, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee cleared the nomination of the next “M” and the career nominee as the next U.S. Ambassador to Rwanda:

  • Eric M. Ueland, of Oregon, to be an Under Secretary of State (Management), vice Patrick Francis Kennedy
  • Peter Hendrick Vrooman, of New York, a Career Member of the Senior Foreign Service, Class of Counselor, to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Republic of Rwanda.

Below is a clip from Mr. Ueland’s hearing from last fall:

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Trump Nominates Texas Judge Edward C. Prado to be U.S. Ambassador to Argentina

Posted: 2:18 am ET

 

On January 17, the WH announced the President’s intent to nominate Texas judge Edward C. Prado to be the next U.S. Ambassador to Argentina. The WG released the following brief bio:

Edward C. Prado of Texas, to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Argentine Republic.Judge Edward Charles Prado is a distinguished Federal jurist having served as a United States judge for almost 35 years.  The first 19 years, he served as a district judge for the Western District of Texas, and for the past 14 years, he served as an appellate judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.  Judge Prado was appointed by the Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court to serve as chair of the Criminal Justice Active Review Committee, the board of Federal Judicial Center, and on the Defender Services Committee and Judicial Branch Committee of the Judicial Conference of the United States.  Prior to becoming a judge he served as the United States Attorney for the Western District of Texas.  During his term as United States Attorney, he was appointed to serve on the Attorney General’s Advisory Committee.  Judge Prado also served as a state district judge, an assistant Federal public defender, and an assistant State district attorney.  He served in the United States Army Reserves (1972-1987), retiring as a captain.  Judge Prado received his B.A. and J.D. from the University of Texas at Austin.  He speaks fluent Spanish.

Judge Prado’s nomination is currently pending in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee with no announced schedule for his confirmation hearing.

If confirmed, Judge Prado would succeed another political appointee Noah Bryson Mamet (1969–) who served as Ambassador from 2015-2017. The last career diplomat appointed to Argentina was Ambassador Earl Anthony Wayne (1950–) who served from January 2007–April 2009.

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Trump Nominates San Francisco Entrepeneur Trevor Traina to be U.S. Ambassador to Austria

Posted: 2:01 am ET

 

On January 22, the WH announced the President’s nomination of Trevor Traina to be the next U.S. Ambassador to Austria. The WH released the following brief bio.

Trevor Traina of California, to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Republic of Austria. Mr. Traina is a technology entrepreneur and philanthropist based in San Francisco. He is founder and CEO of IfOnly, a company that allows buyers to purchase unique life experiences and donate a portion of the proceeds to charity. Mr. Traina has held non-profit advisory positions at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, the Haas School of Business, and the Princeton University Art Museum. Mr. Traina earned a bachelor’s degree from Princeton University and a special diploma in social studies from Saint Catherine’s College at Oxford in the United Kingdom. Mr. Traina also received a master’s degree in business administration from the Haas School of Business at the University of California Berkeley.

As of this writing the nomination is still pending at the Senate Foreign Relations Committee with the confirmation hearing yet to be announced/scheduled.

Related posts:

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Airborne Lifeline’s Johnathan Miller to be Asst Administrator For @USAIDAfrica

Posted: 2:05 am ET

 

On January 12, the WH announced the President’s intent to nominate Johnathan Miller, most recently president of the Airborne Lifeline Foundation, to be USAID Assistant Administrator for Africa. The WH released the following bio:

Johnathan Miller of Virginia, to be an Assistant Administrator (Bureau for Africa) of the United States Agency for International Development. Mr. Miller most recently served as president of Airborne Lifeline Foundation, which provided scheduled air transport of medical personnel to remote medical facilities in several Southern African countries. Previously, he served as president of Bluemont International and partner at The Brock Group, specializing in emerging market work in Africa and Asia. He also served as the president of the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation, the largest equine rescue organization in the world. Mr. Miller also served as Peace Corps Director in Botswana, at USAID and the Department of State. In addition, he was Senior Director at the National Security Council and Deputy Assistant to President Reagan. Mr. Miller was chief of staff to former Congressman William Goodling of Pennsylvania. He is a Member of the Kentucky Bar and received an A.B. from Duke University and a J.D. from the Louis D. Brandeis School of Law at the University of Louisville.

The foundation’s website has more details and still lists Mr. Miller as president and CEO:

Johnathan Miller is president and CEO of Airborne Lifeline Foundation. He founded the organization in 2005 after recognizing the need for regular medical care in remote villages in Botswana.

Johnathan is president of Bluemont International, an international strategic advisory firm, specializing in Africa and Asia. Prior to that, he served as partner and managing director of the Brock Group, an international trade advisory firm. He developed a large Asia-Pacific practice with clients that included a prominent U.S. aerospace firm, several major global consumer goods companies, two of the world’s largest beverage companies, several major U.S. and foreign air carriers, a leading manufacturer of fuel additives, and a provincial government in China.

Johnathan held high-level positions in the U.S. government during the Reagan administration. He served at the U.S. Agency for International Development and as Peace Corps director to Botswana. As senior director at the National Security Council, he coordinated President Reagan’s foreign missions, including the first Reagan-Gorbachev Summit in Geneva and the president’s visits to Indonesia, the Tokyo economic summit, Mexico, and Grenada. Johnathan also coordinated visits to the U.S. by foreign heads of state, including the prime ministers of Canada, Japan, and the United Kingdom. Later, as deputy assistant to the president for Management and Administration, he oversaw the management of the Executive Office of the President.

Johnathan graduated from Duke University and the University of Louisville School of Law.

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Jackie Wolcott to be U.S. Representative to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and UN Vienna (UNVIE)

Posted: 1:38 am ET

 

On January 12, the WH announced the President’s intent to nominate Jackie Wolcott to be the next U.S. Representative to the  International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). The WH released the following brief bio:

Jackie Wolcott of Virginia, to be the Representative of the United States of America with the rank of Ambassador, on the Board of Governors of the International Atomic Energy Agency. Also, to be Representative of the United States of America to the Vienna Office of the United Nations, with the Rank of Ambassador. Ms. Wolcott has served as commissioner of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom since 2016, following service as the Commission’s executive director from 2010-2015. She served in the Department of State as Special Envoy for Nuclear Nonproliferation (2008-2009), Alternate Representative for Special Political Affairs in the United Nations, with the rank of Ambassador (2006-2008), U.S. Representative to the Conference on Disarmament and Special Representative of the President of the United States for the Nonproliferation of Nuclear Weapons, with Rank of Ambassador in Geneva, Switzerland (2003-2006) and Alternate Representative to the Board of Governors and General Conference of the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna, Austria (2004-2005). Ms. Wolcott earned a B.A. from Bowling Green State University.

Ambassador Walcott was a member of the Trump transition team and was also part of the Agency Landing Team at the State Department following Trump’s election (see Trump Transition: Agency Landing Team For @StateDept Includes Old Familiar Names):

According to state.gov, Ambassador Wolcott was previously appointed U.S. Ambassador to the UN Security Council. She also previously served as United States Permanent Representative to the Conference on Disarmament in Geneva and as Special Representative of the President of the United States for the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons from December 2003 through February of 2006.  She had been Deputy Assistant Secretary of State in the Bureau of International Organization Affairs (State/OI) from 2001 to 2003.  Ballotpedia says that she is a member of Donald Trump’s presidential transition team. Click here for her bio from the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom where she is commissioner.

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WH’s Pick For Barbados Ambassadorship “Should Feel Free to Put on His Tinfoil Hat” Sez @SenSasse Spox

Posted: 1:08 am ET
 

 

The WH announced the Rizzuto nomination early last month (see Prominent Businessman Leandro Rizzuto Jr to be Ambassador to Barbados, But Wait – #ForgotSomething?). Now CNN’s @KFILE has a piece about the nominee’s um … colorful Twitter history. Senator Cruz’s wife Heidi is an architect of the North American Union? Whoa-ha-ha! Who knew about the NAU? We’d like a job there as long as we’re posted in Canada.

GOP Senator Ben Sasse’s spox released a statement saying the nominee “should feel free to put on his tinfoil hat and visit our office with evidence for his salacious conspiracy theories and cuckoo allegations.” Oh, wow! Is he just saying that, and then the Senator will later vote to confirm the nominee? As of this writing, the SFRC does not have a schedule for Mr. Rizzuto’s confirmation hearing.  But we should be ready with the popcorn, anyway.  There will be a hearing, unless he withdraw his name for consideration, which happens with more frequency these days by the way, but it’s not a bad thing, really. Or he doesn’t, and then there will be a cliffhanger on whether he gets the Barbados post or not. It’ll be a ratings bonanza.

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Nominee/Candidates For U.S. Ambassadorships to Singapore, Austria, and South Korea Withdraw From Consideration

Posted: 3:07 am ET

 

So K.T. McFarland is not going to Singapore. The White House sent its renomination of this candidate to the Senate on January 8, 2018. Last week, Ms. McFarland officially withdrew her name from consideration.

Rumored candidate to Austria also withdrew: Mar-a-Lago member Patrick Park, avid fan of “The Sound of Music” according to the Palm Beach Daily News and rumored as the next ambassador to Austria is no longer in the running (also see Tillerson/Priebus Standoff on Ambassadorships, Plus Rumored Names/Posts (Updated).

Rumored nominee for South Korea Victor Cha is apparently no longer in the running for that post. And there’s a whole lot of reports on why that’s the case. Mr. Cha had not been formally announced as a nominee but widely reported and previously expected to be the nominee for the COM spot in Seoul. The WH is now reportedly calling the snafu as a “vetting issue“. What? They’re just discovering the “issue” now after the USG has already requested/received agrément from the SouthKorean government?

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Oil Executive Francis R. Fannon to be Asst Secretary For the Bureau of Energy Resources

Posted: 3:25 am ET

 

On January 12, the WH announced the President’s intent to nominate Francis R. Fannon to be the next Assistant Secretary for the Bureau of Energy Resources (. The WH released the following brief bio:

Francis R. Fannon of Virginia, to be an Assistant Secretary of State (Energy Resources). Mr. Fannon has been a businessman in the global energy and resources industries, an attorney, and a senior staffer in the U.S. Senate. He became partner of the Coefficient Group in Washington, D.C. in 2017. Before that, Mr. Fannon was head of corporate affairs at BHP Billiton and senior director of Murphy Oil Corporation, both in Washington, D.C. A senior staffer in the U.S. Senate, he served as counsel to the Committee on Environment & Public Works (2003-2007), where he assisted in the drafting, negotiation, and ultimate passage of the seminal Energy Policy Act of 2005, senior legislative assistant in the Office of U.S. Senator Ben Nighthorse Campbell (2001-2003), and legislative assistant for U.S. Senator Pete V. Domenici (2000-2001). Prior to joining the Senate, he worked as an attorney in Washington D.C.

Mr. Fannon earned a B.A. from Radford University, a M.A. from the Korbel School of International Studies, University of Denver, and a J.D. from Sturm College of Law, University of Denver.

If confirmed, Mr. Fannon would become the first Assistant Secretary for the Bureau of Energy Resources. Two prior nominees to this position were not acted by the Senate in 2012, and again in 2015.

  • Carlos Pascual (Nominations of February 17, 2012; April 23, 2013; and January 6, 2014, not acted upon by the Senate.)
  • Amos J. Hochstein (Nomination of October 8, 2015, not acted upon by the Senate.)

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SFRC Clears Brownback, Poblete, Grenell, Evans, Danies, Trujillo, Plus Four Foreign Service Lists

Posted: 1:07 am ET

 

On January 18, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee cleared some State Department nominees recently renominated by the White House, as well as four Foreign Service lists (see White House Sends @StateDept Renominations to the Senate).

 

STATE DEPARTMENT

The Honorable Samuel Dale Brownback, of Kansas, to be Ambassador at Large for International Religious Freedom.

Dr. Yleem D. S. Poblete, of Virginia, to be an Assistant Secretary of State (Verification and Compliance).

 

AMBASSADORS

Mr. Richard Grenell, of California, to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Federal Republic of Germany.

Mr. James Randolph Evans, of Georgia, to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to Luxembourg.

Mr. Joel Danies, of Maryland, a Career Member of the Senior Foreign Service, Class of Counselor, to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Gabonese Republic, and to serve concurrently and without additional compensation as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Democratic Republic of Sao Tome and Principe.

The Honorable Carlos Trujillo, of Florida, to be Permanent Representative of the United States of America to the Organization of American States, with the rank of Ambassador.

 

FSO LIST:

PN1433 FOREIGN SERVICE nominations (6) beginning Marc Clayton Gilkey, and ending Mark A. Myers, which nominations were received by the Senate and appeared in the Congressional Record of January 8, 2018.
PN1434 FOREIGN SERVICE nominations (90) beginning Alyce S. Ahn, and ending Michele D. Woonacott, which nominations were received by the Senate and appeared in the Congressional Record of January 8, 2018.
PN1435 FOREIGN SERVICE nominations (118) beginning Priya U. Amin, and ending Erik Z. Zahnen, which nominations were received by the Senate and appeared in the Congressional Record of January 8, 2018.
PN1436 – 1 FOREIGN SERVICE nominations (93) beginning Angela P. Aggeler, and ending Mari Jain Womack, which nominations were received by the Senate and appeared in the Congressional Record of January 8, 2018.

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