James B. Cunningham

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James Cunningham
James B Cunningham.jpg
United States Ambassador to Afghanistan
In office
August 13, 2012 – December 7, 2014
President Barack Obama
Deputy Tina Kaidanow
Preceded by Ryan Crocker
Succeeded by Michael McKinley
United States Ambassador to Israel
In office
September 17, 2008 – May 21, 2011
President George W. Bush
Barack Obama
Preceded by Richard Jones
Succeeded by Daniel B. Shapiro
United States Consul General to Hong Kong and Macau
In office
August 4, 2005 – July 2008
President George W. Bush
Preceded by James R. Keith
Succeeded by Joseph R. Donovan Jr.
United States Ambassador to the United Nations
Acting
In office
January 20, 2001 – September 19, 2001
President George W. Bush
Preceded by Richard Holbrooke
Succeeded by John Negroponte
Personal details
Born 1952 (age 64–65)
Allentown, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Spouse(s) Leslie Genier[1]
Education Syracuse University (BA)

James Blair Cunningham (born 1952) is an American diplomat and the former United States Ambassador to Afghanistan.[2] Cunningham has served in various diplomat positions since graduating from Syracuse University in 1974. Positions that he has previously held include Chief of Staff to NATO Secretary General Manfred Woerner (1989-1990), Deputy Advisor for Political Affairs at the United States Mission to the United Nations (1990-1992), Director of the State Department's Office of European Security and Political Affairs (1993-1995), Deputy Chief of Mission, Embassy of the United States in Rome (1996-2001), Acting United States Ambassador to the United Nations (2001), Consul General of the United States to Hong Kong and Macau (2005-2008) and the United States Ambassador to Israel (2008-2011).

Personal life and career[edit]

Cunningham was born in Allentown, Pennsylvania. He graduated magna cum laude from Syracuse University in 1974, with degrees in Political Science and Psychology.

He has served as the Deputy Chief of Mission, Embassy of the United States in Rome before becoming an ambassador to the United Nations. He has spent most of his career working on European political and security issues, and in multilateral diplomacy.

He served from 1989 to 1990 as Chief of Staff to NATO Secretary General Manfred Woerner. His responsibilities included advising the Secretary General on the entire range of NATO issues in the context of the dissolution of the Warsaw Pact and the Soviet Union.

Cunningham became Deputy Advisor for Political Affairs at the United States Mission to the United Nations in August 1990, just after the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait. He returned to Washington, D.C., as Deputy Director of the State Department's Office of European Security and Political Affairs in 1992, becoming Director in 1993. As Director, he was involved in many aspects of U.S. policy toward Europe, including NATO, arms control and disarmament, and Bosnia. After a year of senior officer development training, he took up his duties in Rome in August 1996.

As Consul General, (from 2005–2008) Cunningham was responsible for Hong Kong and Macau, both special administrative regions of the People's Republic of China. He is known in Chinese as 郭明瀚 Guō Mínghàn.

He is married to Leslie Genier of Mineville, New York. The couple has two daughters, Emma and Abigail.[1]

Awards and honors[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
Richard Holbrooke
United States Ambassador to the United Nations
Acting

2001
Succeeded by
John Negroponte
Preceded by
James R. Keith
United States Consul General to Hong Kong and Macau
2005–2008
Succeeded by
Joseph R. Donovan Jr.
Preceded by
Richard Jones
United States Ambassador to Israel
2008–2011
Succeeded by
Daniel B. Shapiro
Preceded by
Ryan Crocker
United States Ambassador to Afghanistan
2012–2014
Succeeded by
Michael McKinley