Kenneth Merten was sworn-in as U.S. Ambassador to Croatia on October 3, 2012.
Ambassador Merten is a career member of the senior Foreign Service; he joined the diplomatic corps in 1987 and most recently served as Ambassador to Haiti. He also served as a Deputy Executive Secretary to U.S. Secretary of State Clinton and earlier to U.S. Secretary of State Rice. He was awarded the 2011 Ryan C. Crocker Award for Outstanding Leadership in Expeditionary Diplomacy for his extraordinary leadership in the wake of the 2010 Haiti earthquake.
Ambassador Merten’s overseas assignments include the U.S. Embassy in Paris, the U.S. Mission to the European Union in Brussels, the U.S. Embassy in Bonn, and three tours at the U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Ambassador Merten’s other Washington experience includes two assignments in the State Department Operations Center, which supports the daily work and travel of the Secretary of State. He also has worked in the Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs and on the Cuba Desk, and worked for the Special Advisors on Haiti in 1993-1994.
Ambassador Merten holds a B.A. from Miami University in Ohio, and a Masters in Public Administration from American University. Studies at the Université d’Aix-Marseille in France and at Karl Franzens Universität in Austria complement his other academic work. He also received an honorary Doctorate from Miami University in 2010.
Ambassador Merten was born in St. Louis, Missouri and considers Hudson, Ohio his hometown.