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BIOGRAPHY

Barbro Owens-Kirkpatrick
Ambassador, Niger
Term of Appointment: 09/10/1999 to 09/2002

Barbro Owens-Kirkpatrick was sworn in as U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Niger on September 10, 1999. Prior to this appointment, from 1997-98, she was Director of the Office of European Security and Political Affairs (EUR/RPM) in the State Department. As head of this large office tasked with day-to-day management of U.S. policy at NATO and the OSCE, Ambassador Owens-Kirkpatrick played a key role in NATO’s enlargement, NATO’s relations with its partners, management of the Kosovo crisis, and organizing NATO’s 50th anniversary.

Ambassador Owens-Kirkpatrick was Minister Counselor for Political Affairs at the U.S. Embassy in Mexico City from 1994-97, a crucial period in Mexico’s transition from authoritarian government to democracy, and the start-up of the Chiapas rebellion. Prior to Mexico, from 1993-94, she was Director of Inter-American Affairs at the National Security Council, focusing on Cuba, the Haiti crisis, Central and South America. From 1992-93, she was Deputy Director of the Office of International Security Operations (PM/ISO) in the Political-Military Bureau at State. Her team participated in establishing U.S. policy and coordinating global crisis management with DOD counterparts, including in Bosnia, northern Iraq, and Somalia. Ms. Owens-Kirkpatrick was promoted from this job into the Senior Foreign Service in 1993.

Other key assignments include Political Officer in El Salvador 1986-88; Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. regional Embassy in Barbados, West Indies; and Special Assistant to the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations. Ms. Owens-Kirkpatrick was one of two State Department Political Officers deployed to support the 82nd Airborne during the military rescue operation in Grenada in 1983.

Ambassador Owens-Kirkpatrick has a B.A. in Economics from the Helsinki School of Economics in Finland, an MPA from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University, and she is a 1989 graduate of the Army War College in Carlisle, PA. She was promoted to the personal rank of Minister Counselor in 1999, and is the recipient of three individual Superior Honor Awards and numerous group awards.

Ambassador Owens-Kirkpatrick speaks French, Spanish, Swedish, and Finnish.

She is married to a Foreign Service Officer, Alexander Kirkpatrick. They have two children.


Released on February 20, 2002

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