Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs
Assistant Secretary of State
for African Affairs
Seal of the United States Department of State
|Reports to||Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs|
|Nominator||President of the United States|
|Inaugural holder||Joseph C. Satterthwaite|
The Assistant Secretary for the Bureau of African Affairs is the head of the Bureau of African Affairs within the United States Department of State, who guides operation of the U.S. diplomatic establishment in the countries of sub-Saharan Africa and advises the Secretary of State and the Under Secretary for Political Affairs.
The current secretary is Linda Thomas-Greenfield. Previous Assistant Secretaries since the position's creation, by recency, are Johnnie Carson, Jendayi E. Frazer, Constance Berry Newman, Walter H. Kansteiner, III, Susan E. Rice, George Moose, Herman Jay Cohen, Chester A. Crocker, Richard M. Moose, William E. Schaufele, Jr., Nathaniel Davis, Donald B. Easum, David D. Newsom, Joseph Palmer II, G. Mennen Williams, and Joseph C. Satterthwaite.
On July 18, 1958, Congress authorized an eleventh Assistant Secretary of State, enabling the Department of State to create a bureau to deal with relations with the newly independent nations of Africa. At first, when the Department of State established three geographical divisions in 1909, African affairs were the responsibility of the Divisions of Near Eastern and Western European Affairs. Department Order No. 692 of June 15, 1937 transferred responsibility for all African territories except Algeria and the Union of South Africa to the Division of Near Eastern Affairs. A Division of African Affairs was created in the office of Near Eastern Affairs in January 1944. When the Bureau of Near Eastern, South Asian, and African Affairs was created, there continued to be a Division of African Affairs within that bureau.
List of Assistant Secretaries of State for African Affairs
|Portrait||Name||Assumed Office||Left Office||President served under|
|Joseph C. Satterthwaite||September 2, 1958||January 31, 1961||Dwight D. Eisenhower and John F. Kennedy|
|G. Mennen Williams||February 1, 1961||March 23, 1966||John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson|
|Joseph Palmer II||April 11, 1966||July 7, 1969||Lyndon B. Johnson|
|David D. Newsom||July 17, 1969||January 13, 1974||Richard Nixon|
|Donald B. Easum||March 18, 1974||March 26, 1975||Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford|
|Nathaniel Davis||April 2, 1975||December 18, 1975||Gerald Ford|
|William E. Schaufele, Jr.||December 19, 1975||July 17, 1977||Gerald Ford|
|Richard M. Moose||July 6, 1977||January 16, 1981||Jimmy Carter|
|Chester Crocker||June 9, 1981||April 21, 1989||Ronald Reagan|
|Herman Jay Cohen||May 12, 1989||February 26, 1993||George H. W. Bush|
|George Moose||April 2, 1993||August 22, 1997||Bill Clinton|
|Susan E. Rice||October 9, 1997||January 20, 2001||Bill Clinton|
|Walter H. Kansteiner, III||June 4, 2001||November 1, 2003||George W. Bush|
|Constance Berry Newman||June 24, 2004||August 26, 2005||George W. Bush|
|Jendayi Frazer||August 29, 2005||January 20, 2009||George W. Bush|
|Johnnie Carson||May 7, 2009||March 30, 2013||Barack Obama|
|Donald Yamamoto||March 30, 2013||August 5, 2013||Barack Obama|
|Linda Thomas-Greenfield||August 6, 2013||Current||Barack Obama and Donald Trump|
- "Bureau of African Affairs". Archived from the original on 19 September 2007. Retrieved September 21, 2007.
- "Linda Thomas-Greenfield, Assistant Secretary, Bureau of African Affairs". Department of State. Retrieved 2015-03-29.
- "Assistant Secretaries of State for African Affairs". Archived from the original on 15 September 2007. Retrieved September 21, 2007.