Pittsburgh media reported this week that Ambassador Rooney is stepping down as U.S. ambassador to Dublin and rejoining the Pittsburgh Steelers. US Embassy Ireland just released a statement by Ambassador Rooney regarding his tenure:
“In reference to recent media reports, the role of Ambassador from the United States of America to Ireland is extremely rewarding work. It is a privilege to serve President Obama and the country, and to support and expand the excellent relationship we enjoy with Ireland. On July 4, 2012, I will have served three years in Dublin. There is no specific date for departure.”
|Photo from US Embassy Dublin|
If Ambassador Rooney steps down after July 4, 2012, that does not leave a lot of time for a new nominee to get vetted and confirmed prior to the presidential election. In all likelihood, a career diplomat, in this case, John Hennessey-Niland, the embassy's deputy chief of mission who arrived in Ireland on April 9, 2010 will keep things running until a new ambassador is nominated and arrived at post. Which may not happen until the election dust settles and we get a new round of ambassadorships, possibly by the spring of 2013.
That's over a year away, I know ... but hurry! The early bird gets the worm; and the late one doesn't get any embassy in Europe.