Thursday, October 29, 2015

New U.S. Ambassador to Central African Republic Sworn In

On Friday October 15, 2015, Ambassador Jeffrey Hawkins was sworn in as the US Ambassador to the Central African Republic. The ceremony was officiated by Counselor Tom Shannon.

Prior to this position, Ambassador Hawkins served as Consul General at the U.S. Consulate in Lagos, Nigeria, a position he held from 2012 to 2015. Jeffrey Hawkins was Director of the Office of Near East and South and Central Asia in the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor from September 2010 to 2012. He was an adviser to the Assistant Secretary on human rights policies for the Near East and South Central Asia region and managed millions of dollars of human rights programs.

Mr. Hawkins served as Deputy Chief of Mission (DCM) at U.S. Embassy Luanda, Angola between September of 2008 and August of 2010. As DCM, Mr. Hawkins was the Ambassador’s senior advisor on policy and management and oversaw the operations of the Embassy, including some 50 American diplomats and 135 Angolan staff, as well as an $80 million assistant budget.

Prior to arriving in Angola, Mr. Hawkins was U.S. Consul in Lille, France, where he was responsible for American relations with northern France. Between 2004 and 2006, Mr. Hawkins served as Deputy Chief of Mission in Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei.

Mr. Hawkins worked as Political and Economic Counselor in Kabul, Afghanistan in 2003 and 2004. While in Kabul, Mr. Hawkins played a key role in activities with major implications for U.S. foreign policy, including the drafting of the Afghan constitution, preparations for Afghanistan’s first post-conflict elections, and coordination with NATO and the United Nations in the reconstruction of Afghanistan.

Mr. Hawkins has also served as acting Deputy Director of the State Department’s Office of Central Asian Affairs, Desk Officer for Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan, Political Officer in Islamabad, Pakistan, Deputy Consular, Section Chief in Chennai, India and Political Officer in Abidjan, Ivory Coast.

Prior to joining the State Department, Mr. Hawkins was a Presidential Management Intern at the U.S. Department of Commerce.

Mr. Hawkins is the recipient of numerous State Department awards, including the Meritorious Honor Award and the Superior Honor Award. Mr. Hawkins speaks French and Portuguese.

Mr. Hawkins is married to Annie Chansavang, a financial officer with the French oil company Total. They have two sons, Maxime and Alexandre.

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