Biden nominates his first slate of ambassadors

President Biden on Thursday announced more than a dozen nominations for senior State Department positions and his first slate of foreign ambassador, elevating a significant number of Foreign Service Officers to top level jobs.

The nominations signal an effort by the president and Secretary of State Antony Blinken to rebuild trust with the State Department’s staff by promoting career officials and experts in their foreign policy fields who were often sidelined during the former Trump administration.

The announcement is for seven senior State Department positions and nine ambassador posts in Africa, the Middle East and Asia. A majority of the nominees are career Foreign Service Officers with extensive experience in their designated regions.

The nominees also feature a significant number of women and people of color, also part of the Biden administration’s push to increase diversity among senior staff and diplomats.

This includes Karen Erika Donfried, the president of the German Marshall Fund, a premier transatlantic policy think tank, to be assistant secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs. Donfried also served as president and senior director for European affairs at the National Security Council during the Obama administration.

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