Gerald M. Feierstein

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Gerald Michael Feierstein[1]
Full frontal photo of a white man's face and torso, smiling, with white mustache, blondish receding hair, slightly prominent ears, yellow necktie in half windsor, white shirt, dark suit, in front of American flag.
Gerald M. Feierstein in official U.S. State Department photo
Born 1951 (age 63–64)[2]
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Ethnicity Jewish[3][4][5][6]
Alma mater
Occupation Career diplomat
Years active 1975–present
Employer Senior Foreign Service, Minister Counselor (FE-MC)[8]
Spouse(s) Mary Gill Feierstein (m. ~1978)[9][10]
  • Adam
  • Annie
  • Sara

Gerald Michael Feierstein was the United States Ambassador to Yemen under President Barack Obama from September 2010 to October 2013.[10][14][15]

Education and personal life[edit]

Feierstein was born in 1951 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

He received a B.A. in Philosophy from Point Park College in 1973 and an M.A. in International Relations from Duquesne University in 1975.[10][14]

In June 1975, he joined the Foreign Service.[10][16]

He met his wife, Mary, who is Pakistani, while first posted in Islamabad.[17] His son served two combat tours in the United States Marine Corps during the Iraq War.[9]

Diplomatic career[edit]

In June 1975, Feierstein joined the Foreign Service as Director of the Office of Regional Affairs in the Near East Bureau. He subsequently served as: Director of the Office of Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh Affairs; Deputy Director in the Office of Arabian Peninsula Affairs; and Desk Officer for Nepal, Pakistan and Egypt.[18]

Between 2006 and 2008, Feierstein served in Washington, D.C. as Principal Deputy Assistant Coordinator and Deputy Assistant Coordinator for Programs in the Office of the Coordinator for Counterterrorism.

Feierstein has served at the following overseas posts:[18]

Years Location Mission Notes
1976–78 Islamabad  Pakistan
1983–85 Tunis  Tunisia
1985–87 Riyadh  Saudi Arabia
1989–92 Peshawar  Pakistan
1995–98 Muscat  Oman Chargé d'affaires
1998–2001 Jerusalem  Israel Deputy consul general
2003–04 Beirut  Lebanon
2008–10 Islamabad  Pakistan Deputy Chief of Mission
2010–13 Sana'a  Yemen Ambassador

In 2012, al Qaeda in Yemen offered 3 kilograms (96 ozt) of gold (about US$160,000)[19] for killing Ambassador Feierstein, and 5 million Yemeni riyals (about US$23,000)[19] for killing an American soldier in Yemen.[3][4][5][6][20]


  1. ^ "Gerald Michael Feierstein - Bio, News, Photos". Washington Times. Retrieved 2013-01-03. Topic - Gerald Michael Feierstein 
  2. ^ a b "Office of the Historian". U.S. Department of State. Retrieved 2013-01-03. Gerald Feierstein (1951-), Foreign Service officer, State of Residence: Pennsylvania 
  3. ^ a b "Al-Qaeda puts gold bounty on head of Jewish US ambassador in Yemen". The Times of Israel. Associated Press. December 31, 2012. Retrieved 2013-01-02. Al-Qaeda’s branch in Yemen has offered to pay tens of thousands of dollars to anyone who kills the US ambassador in Sanaa or an American soldier in the country. 
  4. ^ a b "Al-Qaida places bounty on head of Jewish U.S. envoy to Yemen". The Jewish Journal (TRIBE Media Corp., formerly Los Angeles Jewish Publications, Inc.). Jewish Telegraphic Agency. December 31, 2012. In a message posted on terrorist websites, al-Qaida offered three kilograms worth of gold, or about $160,000, to anyone who kills the ambassador, who is Jewish. 
  5. ^ a b Lowenthal Marcus, Lori (January 3, 2013). "Al Qaeda Puts Bounty on Jewish US Envoy’s Head (Video)". Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) is offering gold worth more than $100,000 to anyone who will kill the Jewish U.S. Ambassador to Yemen, Gerald M. Feierstein, as well as more than $20,000 for anyone who kills a U.S. serviceman in Yemen. 
  6. ^ a b "Al Qaeda Places Bounty on Head of US Ambassador to Yemen". Jspace. January 2, 2013. Retrieved 2013-01-03. Al Qaeda has offered a hefty ransom for the killing of US ambassador to Yemen, the Jewish diplomat Gerald Feierstein. 
  7. ^ Crosby, Wes (December 2, 2010). "DU grad named Yemeni ambassador". The Duquesne Duke (Duquesne University). ...earned a master's degree in international relations from Duquesne in 1975... 
  8. ^ "State Magazine November 2010". U.S. Department of State. Retrieved 2013-01-03. Gerald M. Feierstein of Pennsylvania, a career member of the Senior Foreign Service, class of Minister Counselor, is the new U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Yemen. 
  9. ^ a b Feierstein, Gerald M. (July 19, 2010). "statement of Ambassador-Designate to the Republic of Yemen" (PDF). U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations. Retrieved 2010-11-26. 
  10. ^ a b c d "Embassy biography". September 17, 2010. Retrieved November 26, 2010. 
  11. ^ "AllGov - Officials". AllGov. Retrieved 2013-01-02. 
  12. ^ "1972-1973 | Point Park University". Retrieved 2013-01-02.  (list of missing alumni)
  13. ^ "Alumnus Gerald M. Feierstein is New Ambassador to Yemen" (PDF). The Point: A Magazine for Alumni and Friends of Point Park University (Pittsburgh: Park Point University). Spring 2011. p. 36. Retrieved 2013-01-03. Gerald M. Feierstein (A&S 1973) was sworn in on Sept. 17, 2010, as the new United States Ambassador to Yemen. Prior to his appointment, he was the deputy chief of mission in Islamabad, Pakistan. 
  14. ^ a b "New American ambassador to Yemen". Yemen Times. September 17, 2010. Retrieved November 26, 2010. 
  15. ^ "Gerald Feierstein biography". Retrieved 2011. 
  16. ^ "Duquesne Alumnus Seated as Ambassador to Yemen". The Duquesne Duke (Duquesne University). November 16, 2010. He received a master’s degree in international relations from Duquesne University in 1975, and entered the Foreign Service that June. 
  17. ^ Itkowitz, Colby (September 13, 2012). "Philadelphia-born ambassador to Yemen doesn't fear for his safety. His wife says diplomat in Yemen isn't worried about his safety despite unrest.". The Morning Call. Allentown, Pennsylvania. Retrieved 2013-01-03. 
  18. ^ a b "Appointments and Resignations - Ambassador to Yemen: Who Is Gerald Feierstein? - AllGov - News". February 19, 2011. Retrieved 2013-01-03. 
  19. ^ a b OANDA Currency/precious metals Converter for December 31, 2012
  20. ^ Morrison, James (December 30, 2012). "Embassy Row: Hit list". Washington Times. Retrieved 2013-01-02. Al Qaeda is offering a bounty of more than 6 pounds of gold to anyone who assassinates the U.S. ambassador to Yemen after U.S. drone strikes killed nine suspected terrorists last week in the battle-scarred Arabian Peninsula country. 

External links[edit]

  • Montagne, Renée (January 20, 2011). "U.S. Tries To Work Against Extremists In Yemen". National Public Radio. There is a direct threat to U.S. national security that comes out of the ability of al-Qaida and the Arabian Peninsula and other violent extremist groups to operate in Yemen. 
Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
Stephen A. Seche
United States Ambassador to Yemen
Succeeded by
Matthew H. Tueller