|Ambassador of Australia to Israel|
8 August 2013
|Preceded by||Andrea Faulkner|
|Born||1976 (age 41–42)
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Devanand "Dave" Sharma (born 1975) is an Australian diplomat with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. He concluded his most recent post as Ambassador of Australia to Israel in mid-June 2017, replaced by Chris Cannan on 19 June 2017.
He has held a number of senior positions in the Australian Government, including from 2010 to 2012 as the head of the International Division in the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. Since June 2013 he has been serving as the Australian Ambassador to Israel. His appointment, at the age of 37, made him the youngest person to be appointed as an Australian Ambassador and the second Australian Ambassador of Indian heritage.
Early life and education
Sharma is of Indian heritage and was born in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada in 1975. His family moved to Turramurra, New South Wales, in 1979. Reflecting on his initial years in Australia Sharma told the Australian Indian Herald in May 2013, "we were the only Sharma's [sic] in the whole of white pages of Sydney"
Sharma attended secondary school at Turramurra High School in Sydney. He graduated in 1993 topping the state in the Higher School Certificate, with the highest possible Tertiary Entrance Rank of 100.
Sharma studied a Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts at Cambridge University between 1994 and 1997, he initially studied natural sciences but transferred to law in 1995 (his second year) and graduated in law with first class honours. He then returned to Sydney and studied medicine at Sydney Medical School. Following a year of studying medicine, he began working as a civil servant for the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and completed a Masters in International Relations through Deakin University. He is fluent in English, and speaks some Hebrew, Spanish and Tok Pisin.
Sharma began working for the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade in 1999 and had held posts both in Australia and abroad. From 2004 to 2006 he served in parliament as the legal adviser to Foreign Affairs Minister Alexander Downer and was then appointed to the Australian Embassy in Washington from 2006 until 2009.
Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet
From 2010 to 2012 Sharma was the head of the International Division in the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. He advised the Prime Minister Julia Gillard during G-20 summits (including as the Prime Minister's sous-sherpa) and East Asia summits and was involved in international diplomatic events which occurred in Australia including the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in October 2011 and during US President Barack Obama's visit to Australia in November 2011.
Sharma served as the Assistant Secretary, responsible for the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade's Africa Branch between 2012 and 2013. In November 2012, Sharma led a visit to Abuja, Nigeria and participated in talks with the Nigerian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and National Security Adviser as well as with officials from the Economic Community of West African States.
Ambassador to Israel
Sharma was appointed the Ambassador to Israel by the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Bob Carr, on 16 May 2013 replacing Andrea Faulkner. Sharma presented his credentials to Israeli President Shimon Peres on 8 August 2013.
His appointment as an ambassador at the age of 37 made him the youngest person to be appointed as an Australian Ambassador. He is the second Australian Ambassador of Indian heritage, the first being Peter Varghese.
Sharma, and his wife Rachel, visited casualties of the Syrian civil war in the Ziv Medical Center in Zefat, Israel. This visit made him the first international representative to visit casualties of the war.
In April 2017, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Julie Bishop, announced that Chris Cannan would succeed Sharma as Ambassador to Israel in mid-2017. Cannan began his appointment as Ambassador on 19 June 2017.
Sharma has written and spoken extensively on the challenges and opportunities of conducting diplomacy in the digital age.
Sharma is married to Rachel Lord, a trained lawyer and diplomat with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. In 2014 she was the president of the Diplomatic Spouses Club in Israel. Sharma and Lord have three daughters aged 11 to 5.
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- @@AusAmbIsrael (19 June 2017). "Our new ambassador, Chris Cannan, has hit the ground running" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
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- "Senior officials visit Abuja" (PDF). Aussie News (5). Abuja: Australian High Commission in Nigeria. Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. February 2013. p. 7. Retrieved 12 December 2015.
- Carr, Bob (16 May 2013). "Ambassador to Israel" (Press release). Australian Government. Archived from the original on 11 February 2014.
- Herb, Keinon (16 May 2013). "Diplomat Dave Sharma named as new Aussie envoy". The Jerusalem Post. Jerusalem, Israel: Palestine Post Ltd. Retrieved 21 November 2013.
- "Australia appoints new ambassador to Israel". J-Wire. 16 May 2013. Retrieved 21 November 2013.
- "Getting to know you.." J-Wire. 9 August 2013. Retrieved 21 November 2013.
- "Australian ambassador visits Syrian patients in Israeli hospital". J-Wire. 29 August 2013. Retrieved 21 November 2013.
- "Ambassador to Israel" (Press release). Australian Government. 12 April 2017. Retrieved 25 June 2017.
- Cashman, Greer Fay (12 July 2014). "Diplomatic spouses – more than coffee and cake". The Jerusalem Post.
|Australian Ambassador to Israel
2013 – 2017
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