Richard Norland

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Richard Norland
Richard B. Norland official State Department photo.jpg
United States Ambassador to Libya
Assumed office
August 8, 2019
PresidentDonald Trump
Preceded byPeter W. Bodde
United States Ambassador to Georgia
In office
September 10, 2012 – July 2015
PresidentBarack Obama
Preceded byJohn Bass
Succeeded byIan Kelly
United States Ambassador to Uzbekistan
In office
September 20, 2007 – July 24, 2010
PresidentGeorge W. Bush
Barack Obama
Preceded byJon Purnell
Succeeded byGeorge Krol
Personal details
Richard Boyce Norland

1955 (age 64–65)
Spouse(s)Mary Hartnett
Alma materGeorgetown University
Johns Hopkins University
National Defense University

Richard Boyce Norland (born 1955)[1] is an American diplomat. He currently serves as the United States Ambassador to Libya.


Ambassador Richard Norland previously served as the Foreign Policy Advisor to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Joseph Dunford. Prior to that he served as U.S. Ambassador to Georgia (2012-2015), Deputy Commandant/International Affairs Advisor at the National War College (2010-2012), U.S. Ambassador to Uzbekistan (2007-2010), and Deputy Chief of Mission at the American Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan (2005-2007) and Riga, Latvia (2003-2005).[2]

From October 2002 through January 2003, Richard Norland served in Mazar-e-Sharif, Afghanistan as a diplomat with the U.S. Army Civil Affairs team promoting political and economic reconstruction.[2]

Richard Norland was Director for European Affairs at the National Security Council for two years during the Clinton and Bush administrations, focusing in particular on the Northern Ireland peace process, as well as on the Baltic States, OSCE, and a number of key European partners. He served as Political Counselor at the American Embassy in Dublin, Ireland from 1995 through the negotiation of the 1998 Good Friday Agreement.[3]

Richard Norland served from 1988-1990 as Political Officer at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow, USSR during President Gorbachev's tenure and the period of glasnost and perestroika. He was subsequently detailed to the Pentagon's Office of the Secretary of Defense, where he worked on policy issues following the break-up of the Soviet Union. He served in 1993 as the U.S. representative and acting mission head on the CSCE Mission to Georgia, addressing conflicts in South Ossetia and Abkhazia, and later visited Chechnya in a similar capacity.[3]

Earlier in his career, Richard Norland served in the United States' northernmost diplomatic office, 250 miles north of the Arctic Circle, as Chief of the U.S. Information Office in Tromsø, Norway. He later served as Senior Arctic Official coordinating the U.S. chairmanship of the Arctic Council. He was also a Special Assistant (for African affairs) to the Under Secretary for Political Affairs. He served as Norway-Denmark desk officer, and as assistant desk officer for South Africa. His first tour was in Manama, Bahrain.[3]

United States Ambassador to Libya[edit]

On April 2, 2019, President Donald Trump nominated Richard Norland to be the United States Ambassador to Libya.[4] On August 1, 2019, the Senate confirmed his nomination by voice vote.[5] He assumed office on August 8, 2019.[1]

Personal life[edit]

The son of an American diplomat, Ambassador Norland was born in Morocco and grew up in Africa and Europe as well as the United States. Prior to joining the Foreign Service in 1980, Ambassador Norland worked as a legislative analyst in the Iowa House of Representatives. He graduated from Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service in 1977. He has master's degrees from the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies and the National War College. In addition to English, he speaks Russian, French and Norwegian. He and his wife, Mary Hartnett, have two children.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Richard B. Norland". U.S. Department of State Office of the Historian.
  2. ^ a b "Ambassador Richard B. Norland: Foreign Policy Advisor to the Chairman". Joint Chiefs of Staff.
  3. ^ a b c d "Richard B. Norland: U.S. State Department Senior Fellow". Georgetown University School of Foreign Service: Institute for the Study of Diplomacy.
  4. ^ "President Donald J. Trump Announces Intent to Nominate and Appoint Individuals to Key Administration Posts".
  5. ^ "PN565 — Richard B. Norland — Department of State". United States Congress. August 1, 2019. Retrieved August 5, 2019.

External links[edit]

Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
Jon Purnell
United States Ambassador to Uzbekistan
Succeeded by
George Krol
Preceded by
John Bass
United States Ambassador to Georgia
Succeeded by
Ian Kelly
Preceded by
Deborah K. Jones
United States Ambassador to Libya