March 2016



Martín Lousteau became ambassador of Argentina to the United States on Jan. 28, 2016. In October 2013, he was elected a member of Parliament representing the city of Buenos Aires, and in 2015, he was a candidate for mayor of Buenos Aires with the ECO coalition, receiving 48.4 percent of the vote. Ambassador Lousteau previously served as minister of economy and production (2008) and as minister of production in the province of Buenos Aires (2005). Between 2006 and 2007, he was chairman of Banco de la Provincia de Buenos Aires and Grupo Bapro SA. After the collapse of the Convertibility Plan, he advised the Central Bank governor from 2003 to 2004. Recently, he was a partner and CEO of LCG SA, a consulting firm specializing in macroeconomics and politics in Argentina. He was also a columnist for La Nación newspaper and the author of four books, including the bestseller “Economía 3D.” Ambassador Lousteau graduated in economics from the University of San Andres (cum laude) and obtained his master’s degree in economics from the London School of Economics and Political Science. He taught at Torcuato di Tella University, San Andrés University and University College London. In 2008, the World Economic Forum elected him as a Young Global Leader, and in 2012, he was selected as a World Fellow at Yale University.


Grigor Hovhannissian became ambassador of Armenia to the United States on Jan. 28, 2016, having previously served as Armenia’s ambassador to Mexico (with concurrent accreditation to Panama, Costa Rica, Cuba and Guatemala) since 2014. Ambassador Hovhannissian also served as Armenia’s consul general to Los Angeles (2009-13), executive director of the Shushi Revival Fund in Armenia (2006-09) and visiting lecturer of Middle East politics with the Oriental Studies Faculty at Yerevan State University (2005-08). In addition, he was field coordinator for the Saida region with the U.N. Emergency Mission to Lebanon (2006); senior advisor to the deputy special representative of the secretary-general with the U.N. Assistance Mission to Iraq based in Jordan (2004); U.N. field coordinator in the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and Gaza Strip (2002-03); and team leader and emergency planner with the Office of the U.N. Special Coordinator (UNSCO) for the Middle East peace process in Jerusalem (2001-03). Other U.N. postings include head of the Kinshasa (Democratic Republic of the Congo) and Brazzaville (Republic of the Congo) Offices for the U.N. Secretariat Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (1998-2000); assistant to the special coordinator of program and public information for the U.N. Special Mission to the African Great Lakes Region (1996-98); and coordinator of the shelter program for the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees Yerevan Office (1994-96). Ambassador Hovhannissian graduated from the Department of Oriental Studies at Yerevan State University, Haigazyan University in Beirut and the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University in Massachusetts. Born Jan. 26, 1971, in Yerevan, he speaks English and Russian and is married with two children.


Joe Hockey became ambassador of Australia to the United States on Jan. 28, 2016. He first entered Parliament in 1996 as the member for North Sydney and spent more than 17 years on the front bench. Ambassador Hockey served as a minister in a number of different portfolios, including financial services, small business and tourism, human services and employment and workplace relations. In 2013, Ambassador Hockey was appointed treasurer of the commonwealth and was responsible for all economic policy including fiscal policy. He served as chair of the G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors in 2014, and he was a member of the leadership troika in 2015. As treasurer, he was a regular delegate to the IMF, World Bank, Asian Development Bank and APEC meetings. Previously, Ambassador Hockey served as a banking and finance lawyer with a major Australian law firm. He graduated from the University of Sydney with bachelor’s degrees in arts and law. Ambassador Hockey is married to Melissa Babbage, a company director and former investment banker. They have three young children: Xavier, Adelaide and Ignatius.


Wolfgang Waldner became ambassador of Austria to the United States on Jan. 28, 2016. He previously served as state secretary (deputy minister) for European and international affairs from 2011 to 2012 in the regional government of Carinthia and as director of the MuseumsQuartier in Vienna from 1999 to 2011. He also served two postings in the United States as director of the Austrian Cultural Fora in Washington, D.C., and New York. Most recently, Ambassador Waldner served as director general for cultural policy at the Foreign Ministry in Vienna. Ambassador Waldner, who was born and raised in Villach, Austria, started his career in the Federal Ministry for European and International Affairs in 1981. He holds a doctorate in law and languages from the University of Vienna and post-graduate diplomas from the Johns Hopkins University School for Advanced International Studies and the Université des Sciences Sociales in Grenoble, France. He is married and the father of two daughters. Ambassador Waldner can be followed on Twitter at @WaldnerWolfgang.


Carlos dos Santos became ambassador of Mozambique to the United States on Jan. 28, 2016, having previously served as Mozambique’s high commissioner to the United Kingdom since 2011. In addition, he was ambassador of Mozambique to Germany (2006-11); director for Europe and the Americas in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation (2005-06); advisor to the president (2003-05); and permanent representative to the United Nations (1996-2002). Ambassador Santos also served as private secretary to the president (1992-96), chef of cabinet to the Office of the Minister of Foreign Affairs (1991-92) and head of the Political Department of the Africa and Middle East Division at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (1990-91). Ambassador Santos holds a master’s degree in international relations from the University of Zimbabwe and a master’s of business administration (executive MBA) from the Zicklin School of Business – Baruch College City University of New York. Born July 8, 1961, in Manhiça, Mozambique, he is married.

New Zealand

Timothy Groser became ambassador of New Zealand to the United States on Jan. 28, 2016. Ambassador Groser was elected to Parliament in 2005 and was cabinet minister from 2008 to 2015, most recently as minister of trade and minister responsible for climate change issues. From 2002 to 2005, he was New Zealand’s ambassador to the World Trade Organization (WTO) and chair of agriculture negotiations for the WTO. He also served as New Zealand’s ambassador to Indonesia from 1994 to 1997. Ambassador Groser is regarded as one of the world’s leading experts on international trade and has held various posts, including New Zealand’s chief negotiator in the GATT Uruguay Round, which brought agriculture into the system of world trade rules for the first time, and has been instrumental in helping to develop the global research alliance on greenhouse gas emissions. Born in Perth, Scotland, Ambassador Groser moved to New Zealand with his parents in 1958.


Domingos Teixeira de Abreu Fezas Vital became ambassador of Portugal to the United States on Jan. 28, 2016, having previously served as Portugal’s permanent representative to the European Union since 2012. In addition, Ambassador Fezas Vital served as senior diplomatic advisor to the president (2006-12); deputy permanent representative in Portugal’s Permanent Representation to the EU (2002-06); consul general in São Paulo (2000-02); and deputy director general of the Directorate General of Multilateral Affairs in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (1999-2000). Other postings include senior diplomatic advisor to the governor of Macau and head of the Coordinating Group for the Macau – Guangdong Border Sub-Groups; deputy permanent representative to the Western European Union in the Portuguese Mission to NATO (1994-96); Portuguese representative at the Secretariat for European Political Cooperation (1991-94); a member of the Portuguese Permanent Representation to the European Communities in Brussels (1989-91); and advisor in the Cabinet of the Minister of Foreign Affairs (1987-89). Ambassador Fezas Vital, who was born Sept. 27, 1958, in Luanda, Angola, joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1983. He graduated in social and juridical sciences from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro and holds a law degree from the University of Coimbra as well as a post-graduate diploma in international trade from the Solvay Institute of the Université Libre de Bruxelles. He is married with two children.

St. Kitts and Nevis

Thelma Phillip-Browne became ambassador of St. Kitts and Nevis to the United States on Jan. 28, 2016. For over 21 years, Ambassador Phillip-Browne served in various medical positions in St. Kitts as a civil servant and in 1995 served as director of primary health care and later chief medical officer of the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis. From 1994 until her current appointment, she also practiced dermatology in a private capacity. In 2011, Ambassador Phillip-Browne obtained a master of theological science (MTS) degree from Anderson University in Indiana. She has served as a lay preacher and active member of the Women of the Church of God as well as a partner of the Child Evangelism Fellowship’s St. Kitts and Nevis chapter. Ambassador Phillip-Browne has also been an active member of the community, including as a social commentator and after-school program coordinator. Her community involvements included hosting a morning devotional program on a local radio station, WINN FM, as well as co-hosting a “One Love” spiritually based program on Sugar City Rock radio. A sports enthusiast, she represented St. Kitts in netball for many years and was a member of the Caribbean Netball Association’s championship team in 1973. She has also served in various managerial positions on the St. Kitts Netball Association. Her political career includes candidacy for the East Basseterre constituency under the banner of the United National Empowerment Party (UNEP), which contested the general elections in St. Kitts and Nevis in 2004. She is also a founding member of the People’s Labour Party (PLP), which successfully contested the 2015 general elections as a part of the historic and successful “Unity Construct.” Ambassador Phillip-Browne was born in Basseterre, St. Kitts, on May 21 1953, and is one of eight siblings. Following secondary education, she graduated with a medical degree from the University of the West Indies (UWI) in Mona, Jamaica. Dr. Phillip-Browne received training in public health at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and is also a graduate from the Cardiff University School of Medicine in Wales, with a diploma in dermatological science. Ambassador Phillip-Browne is the mother of two daughters and a son and grandmother of two girls.

Saudi Arabia

Prince Abdullah Faisal Turki Al-Saud became ambassador of Saudi Arabia to the United States on Jan. 28, 2016. He started his professional life as an engineer with the newly established Royal Commission for Jubail and Yanbu, where he held technical and managerial positions and supervised key studies for the two industrial cities and for the industrial security and safety sector. In the 1980s, Ambassador Al-Saud assumed the duties of acting secretary-general of the Royal Commission, a post he held until 1987, when he was appointed secretary-general. In January 1991, he was promoted to the position of chairman, also serving as chief executive officer of the Royal Commission and chairman of its Board of Directors. Ambassador Al-Saud was born in 1951 in Saudi Arabia. He is the nephew of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud. He received his education in Saudi Arabia and studied engineering in the United Kingdom.

United Kingdom

Kim Darroch became ambassador of the United Kingdom to the United States on Jan. 28, 2016, having previously served as national security advisor to the British prime minister from January 2012 to September 2015. In that role, he was secretary of the National Security Council and led the national security team on issues such as the rise of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, Russian aggression in Ukraine, the nuclear threat from Iran and the collapse of government authority in Libya. Prior to his appointment as national security advisor, Ambassador Darroch served in Brussels as the British permanent representative to the European Union (2007-11), representing British interests in areas such as enlargement, the aftermath of the financial crisis and the issues surrounding European integration. From 2004 to 2007, he served as European Union advisor to the prime minister and head of the Cabinet Office European Secretariat. Earlier in his career, Ambassador Darroch served in a wide range of positions and policy specialties, including private secretary to the minister of state responsible for the Middle East, head of the Adriatic Department during the Dayton Accord negotiations and head of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office News Department. In addition to two postings to Brussels, he has completed tours in Tokyo and Rome. Ambassador Darroch was born in the village of South Stanley, County Durham, in the north of England in April 1954. He attended Durham University, where he read zoology, and joined the Diplomatic Service in 1977. Ambassador Darroch married his wife, Vanessa, in 1978. They have two grown children, Simon and Georgina. Ambassador Darroch can be followed on Twitter @KimDarroch.