Donald B. Easum

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Donald B. Easum
5th United States Ambassador to Burkina Faso
In office
December 8, 1971 – January 19, 1974
President Richard Nixon
Preceded by William E. Schaufele, Jr.
Succeeded by Pierre R. Graham
5th United States Ambassador to Nigeria
In office
May 22, 1975 – October 15, 1979
President Richard Nixon
Preceded by John E. Reinhardt
Succeeded by Stephen Low (diplomat)
Personal details
Born (1923-08-27) August 27, 1923 (age 91)
Profession Diplomat

Donald Boyd Easum (born August 27, 1923) spent 27 years in the United States Foreign Service at posts in Nicaragua, Indonesia, Senegal, Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Niger, Upper Volta (Ambassador, 1971–74) and Nigeria (Ambassador, 1975–79). He served in the Pacific theater during World War II.

Foreign service[edit]

During the Nixon/Ford Administration, Easum served as Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs. Earlier State Department assignments included Executive Secretary of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and Staff Director of the United States National Security Council's Interdepartmental Group for Latin America. Easum was also president of the Africa-America Institute from 1980 to 1988.[1] He has held consultant positions with USAID, WorldSpace, River Blindness Foundation, Volunteers in Technical Assistance and Global Business Access. In April 2003 he was a member of the National Democratic Institute's monitoring team for the Nigerian elections. He is a Board member of the American School of Tangier / The American School of Marrakesh, Pact (Washington, DC), and the Rothko Chapel in Houston.


Easum was Senior Fellow at Yale University's Stimson Seminar from 1998 to 2004 and has taught at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs. He has lectured widely in the United States, Europe and Africa on U.S.-African relations. Easum attended The Hotchkiss School, and holds a B.A. degree (Phi Beta Kappa) from the University of Wisconsin–Madison as well as M.P.A. and Ph.D. degrees from Princeton University. He also studied at the University of London on a Fulbright scholarship and in Buenos Aires on a Doherty Foundation grant and a Penfield fellowship. He is a member of the American Academy of Diplomacy and Council on Foreign Relations.


  • La Prensa and the Freedom of the Press in Argentina, 1951
  • "United States Policy Toward South Africa," Chapter 12 in Race and Politics in South Africa, edited by Ian Robertson and Philip Whitten, Transaction, Inc., New Brunswick, NJ, 1978
  • The call for black studies, (U.S. Foreign Service Institute. Senior Seminar in Foreign Policy. Case study)

Personal life[edit]

As of 2006, Easum lives in New York City. He has four children and eight grandchildren whose birthplaces include Tokyo, Amsterdam, Dakar, São Paulo, Jakarta, and Managua.[citation needed] He plays the trumpet and sings in choirs.


  1. ^ "AAI in the 1980s". Retrieved 2012-11-08. 
Political offices
Preceded by
David D. Newsom
United States Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs
Succeeded by
Nathaniel Davis