AMBASSADOR EDWARD P. DJEREJIAN, the founding Director of the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy at Rice University, is one of the United States most distinguished diplomats with his career spanning the administrations of eight U.S. Presidents. A leading expert on the complex political, security, economic, religious, and ethnic issues of the Middle East, Ambassador Djerejian has played key roles in the Arab-Israeli peace process, the U.S.-led coalition against Saddam Hussein's invasion of Kuwait, successful efforts to end the civil war in Lebanon, the release of U.S. hostages in Lebanon, and the establishment of collective and bilateral security arrangements in the Persian Gulf.
Prior to his nomination by President Clinton as United States Ambassador to Israel, Ambassador Djerejian served both President Bush and President Clinton as Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs and President Reagan and President Bush as U.S. Ambassador to the Syrian Arab Republic. Ambassador Djerejian has also served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs, as Special Assistant to the President and Deputy Press Secretary for Foreign Affairs in the White House, and as Deputy Chief of the U.S. mission to the Kingdom of Jordan.
A foreign service officer since 1962, other assignments include political officer in Beirut, Lebanon, and Casablanca, Morocco, Consul General in Bordeaux, France, and he headed the political section in the U.S. Embassy in Moscow during the critical period in U.S.-Soviet relations marked by the invasion of Afghanistan. Ambassador Djerejian served in the United States Army as a First Lieutenant in the Republic of Korea following his graduation from the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. He holds a Bachelor of Science, an Honorary Doctorate in Humanities from Georgetown University, and an Honorary Doctor of Laws, honoris causa, from Middlebury College, and is fluent in Arabic, Russian, French, and Armenian.
Ambassador Djerejian has been awarded the Presidential Distinguished Service Award, the Department of State's Distinguished Honor Award, the President's Meritorious Service Award and the Ellis Island Medal of Honor.
Ambassador Djerejian was asked by Secretary of State Colin Powell to chair a
congressionally mandated Advisory Group on Public Diplomacy in the Arab and Muslim
World. The advisory group published its report on October 1, 2003. The report
is accessible on the Baker Institute Webpage.
Last updated September 2004