Nancy J Powell, a career diplomat with wide experience in South Asia, has been named by U.S. President Barack Obama as the next Ambassador to India, the first woman to be nominated for the coveted post.
64-year-old Ms. Powell would replace Timothy J Roemer, who resigned from his post in April 2011 following a two-year stint as U.S. envoy to India, after going through a confirmation process by the Senate. Peter Burleigh is currently serving as the Charge d’affaires of the U.S. embassy in India.
Ms. Powell, a career member of the Senior Foreign Service, earlier served as U.S. Ambassador to Pakistan and Nepal and also held various diplomatic posts in Kolkata, New Delhi, Dhaka, Kathmandu, Islamabad and Ottawa.
“These fine public servants both bring a depth of experience and tremendous dedication to their new roles,” Mr. Obama said in a statement, announcing Ms. Powell’s appointment and that of Dick Berner, who has been named Director, Office of Financial Research, Department of Treasury.
“Our nation will be well-served by these individuals, and I look forward to working with them in the months and years to come,” he said.
Presently serving as Director General of the Foreign Service and Director of Human Resources at the Department of State, Ms. Powell was conferred the personal rank of Career Ambassador in January 2011.
Prior to her current assignment, Ms. Powell served as Ambassador to Nepal (2007-2009), Ambassador to Pakistan (2002-2004), Ambassador to Ghana (2001-2002), and Ambassador to Uganda (1997-1999). Ms. Powell’s Washington assignments include: Refugee Assistance Officer, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for African Affairs, Acting Assistant Secretary for International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Activities, and the National Intelligence Officer for South Asia at the National Intelligence Council.
Ms. Powell joined the Foreign Service in 1977 following six years as a high school social studies teacher in Dayton, Iowa.
She graduated from the University of Northern Iowa.