David O'Sullivan (civil servant)

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David O'Sullivan
David O'Sullivan (1).jpg
Appointed Ambassador of the European Union to the United States and the Head of the Delegation of the European Union to the United States
Incumbent
Assumed office
1 November 2014
Preceded by João Vale de Almeida
Chief Operating Officer of the EEAS
In office
1 December 2010 – 31 October 2014
Director-General of DG RELEX
In office
28 October 2010 – 1 December 2010
President José Manuel Barroso
Preceded by João Vale de Almeida
Succeeded by Post abolished
Director-General of DG Trade
In office
10 November 2005 – 28 October 2010
President José Manuel Barroso
Preceded by Peter Carl
Succeeded by Jean-Luc Demarty
Secretary General of the European Commission
In office
1 June 2000 – 10 November 2005
President Romano Prodi
José Manuel Barroso
Preceded by Carlo Trojan
Succeeded by Catherine Day
Personal details
Born (1953-03-01) 1 March 1953 (age 61)
Ireland
Alma mater Trinity College, Dublin
College of Europe, Bruges

David O'Sullivan (born 1953, Ireland) is the Appointed Ambassador of the European Union to the United States and the Head of the Delegation of the European Union to the United States. Prior to arriving to the United States, he was the chief operating officer of the European Union's diplomatic corps, the European External Action Service (EEAS). He has held a number of high level positions including Head of Cabinet to Romano Prodi and Secretary-General of the European Commission between June 2000 and November 2005. In 2010 he was appointed as Director General for Relex with the responsibility of setting up the EEAS and was appointed the Chief Operating Officer on 1 January 2011.[1]

Early and personal life[edit]

He was born in 1953, in Ireland, and is married with two children. He speaks English, French, Spanish, German and Japanese .[2]

O'Sullivan studied Economics and Sociology at Trinity College Dublin. He graduated in 1975, then going to study at College of Europe in Bruges a year later, where he earned a postgraduate Certificate of Advanced European Studies. He then worked at the Irish Department of Foreign Affairs until 1979 when he entered the European Commission. While at Trinity, he was Auditor and debating Gold medalist of the College Historical Society and winner of the Irish Times debating competition.

European Commission[edit]

In the Commission, he served as;

  • Official of the Directorate General for External Relations. (1979)
  • First Secretary in the Delegation of the Commission in Japan. (1981)
  • Member of Commissioner Sutherland cabinet with specific responsibility for social affairs and relations with the European Parliament social affairs and relations with the.(1985)
  • Head of Unit in the Task Force for Education, Youth and Training. (1989)
  • Member of Commissioner Flynn cabinet with specific responsibility for Social Dialogue and Labour Law.(1993)
  • Deputy head in the cabinet of Commissioner Flynn. (1994)
  • Directorate General for Employment – Director for policy and Coordination of the European Social Fund.(1996)
  • Directorate General for Employment – Director for the management of resources.(1998)
  • Director General for Education and Culture.(1999)

Prodi Commission and Director General for Trade[edit]

At the start of the Prodi Commission he was Head of the President's cabinet in 1999 and appointed Secretary-General a year later (in 2000), taking over from Carlo Trojan.

In 2005 he was appointed Director General for Trade where he acted as Chief Negotiator for the Doha Development Round. O'Sullivan also contributed to the launching of numerous bilateral trade negotiations and the conclusion of the Free Trade Agreement with South Korea(FTA); he supervised trade defence instruments and led regular trade dialogues with the European Union's major trade partners.

In November 2010 he was made Director-General of the Directorate-General for External Relations with the specific task of preparing for the launch of the new European External Action Service.

EEAS[edit]

David O'Sullivan became chief operating officer of the European External Action Service (EEAS), the diplomatic service of the European Union, when it came into being on 1 January 2011. In this capacity, he contributed to the setting up of the EEAS. O'Sullivan also had lead responsibilities within the EEAS for relations with Asia (including the Strategic Partnerships with China, India, Japan and South Korea), relations with the rest of Europe (including the Eastern Neighbourhood, the Balkans, Russia and Switzerland) and relations with Africa.[3]

O'Sullivan has been appointed to the post of Ambassador to the European Delegation in Washington as of 1 November 2014.[4]

Honours & Awards[edit]

He is a Vice-President of the College Historical Society (Trinity College, Dublin)

In 1999 he was named European of the Year by the European Movement Ireland.

He was awarded with an Honorary Doctorate from the Dublin Institute of Technology in 2005. In April 2013, O'Sullivan was awarded as Alumnus of the Year by the College of Europe.

He was awarded the EU Transatlantic Business Award by the American Chamber of Commerce in June 2014.

O'Sullivan is Visiting Professor at the College of Europe, Parma.

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Media related to David O'Sullivan at Wikimedia Commons

Political offices
Preceded by
Carlo Trojan
Secretary General of the European Commission
2000–2005
Succeeded by
Catherine Day