Ambassador Jackson was nominated by President Obama on May 9, 2011 and confirmed by the Senate on June 30, 2011 to become the next ambassador to Malawi.
Ambassador Jeanine Jackson, a native of Wyoming, recently completed a two-year assignment as Minister Counselor for management at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad. As such, she provided in a war zone, the support platform for the world’s largest embassy. She simultaneously led the planning and implementation processes required to expand the number of diplomatic establishments throughout Iraq and to take over myriad support functions currently provided by the U.S. military. Ambassador Jackson received the Secretary’s Distinguished Honor Award for leading the Iraq military to civilian transition effort.
She is a career member of the Senior Foreign Service and a retired colonel of the U.S. Army Reserve. She has served as a diplomat in Switzerland, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, Hong Kong, Kenya, and Afghanistan. She was appointed as U.S. Ambassador to Burkina Faso where her focus from 2006-2009 was improved military cooperation and increased infrastructure and development assistance for that West African Country.
Ms. Jackson has been a key player in activities related to creating, adapting, rebuilding, and reopening different U.S. Embassies: As post management officer for the Soviet Union at the time of its dissolution, she managed from Washington the establishment of U.S. Embassies in the 14 new countries left in its wake.
In Hong Kong she established programs to protect the interests of all U.S. Government civilian, military, and local employees at the time of the British Colony’s reversion to Chinese sovereignty. In Kenya following the Al Qaeda bombing, she served as supervisory general services officer of the largest embassy in Africa and was key to reestablishing its operations and infrastructure. In Afghanistan in 2001, she led the team that reopened the U.S. Embassy and then returned to Kabul in 2002 and served as the Embassy’s management counselor until 2003. From Kabul she went to Washington where she was the Department of State’s Management Coordinator responsible for the Inter-Agency effort to reestablish the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad.
In Burkina Faso she achieved a bilateral agreement which enabled U.S. Special Operations Command to regularize and accelerate its counterterrorism work against Al Qaeda in the Maghreb and a five hundred million dollar Millennium Challenge Corporation grant for infrastructure, education and agricultural projects. Concurrently, she orchestrated a greatly improved, bilateral development relationship, cementing strong and mutually supportive ties between the governments and peoples of Burkina Faso and the United States.
Prior to entering the Foreign Service, Ms. Jackson worked in Saigon as a civil service employee in the Office of the U.S. Defense Attaché and then served 10 years as an active duty Army officer, primarily in Germany and Korea. She continued her military service for another 20 years as a reservist while pursuing her Foreign Service career.
Ambassador Jackson earned a bachelor’s degree in art education followed by a master’s degree in business administration. She is an accomplished pianist. She met her husband when they were both Army lieutenants serving in Germany. Enamored of Africa’s cultures, they have independently traveled more than 20,000 miles on the African continent.