Leslie Rowe has served as U.S. Ambassador to Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu since 2006. A career diplomat and Minister Counselor in the Senior Foreign Service, Ambassador Rowe has previously been Deputy Chief of Mission at the American Embassy in Nairobi, Kenya, the largest U.S. Embassy in Sub-Saharan Africa, from 2003 to 2006. Ambassador Rowe entered the Foreign Service in 1983.
From 2000 to 2003, she served as Consul General in Bangkok, Thailand with regional responsibilities for the Embassies in Burma, Cambodia and Laos. She was Consul General in Lisbon, Portugal from 1996 to 2000 and was the first Director of the State Department’s Office of Children’s Issues from 1994 to 1996. During her career in the Foreign Service, she also served in the Human Resources Office from 1993 to 1994 and was Country Desk Officer for Chile from 1992-1993. From 1988 to 1992 she was Principal Officer of the U.S. Consulate in Recife, where she covered political, economic and development issues in seven states in northeast Brazil. She also served as Deputy Consul General at the U.S. Embassy in San Jose, Costa Rica, from 1986 to1988 and consular officer in Sao Paulo, Brazil from 1984 to 1986. Ambassador Rowe holds a B.A. from Washington State University, an M.A. from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University and a M.Ed. from Northeastern University.
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Embassy Lourenco Marques (now Maputo) was opened on Nov 8, 1975, with Johnnie Carson as Chargé d'Affaires ad interim. Ambassador Carson has been recalled from retirement and is now the top-gun at the AF Bureau in Foggy Bottom.
If confirmed Ambassador Rowe would succeed Helen R. Meagher La Lime who was appointed ambassador to Maputo from 2003-2006. William Raymond Steiger of Wisconsin, a godson of former President George H.W. Bush would have been the only non-career appointee in the short history of US Mission Mozambique. He was nominated by George W. on January 10, 2007, but the Senate had not acted on the nomination. The ambassador’s post in Maputo has been left vacant since December 2006. Todd C. Chapman has been the Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. since July 2007.