Ambassador James Knight, a career member of the Senior Foreign Service, Class of Minister-Counselor, was nominated as Ambassador to the Republic of Chad by President Barack Obama on March 13, 2013.
He previously served as Assistant Chief of Mission at U.S. Embassy Baghdad. From 2009 to 2012, he served as U.S. Ambassador to Benin. His earlier overseas assignments include Team Leader of the Ninewa Provincial Reconstruction Team based in Mosul, Iraq (2006-2007); Deputy Chief of Mission at U.S. Embassy Luanda, Angola (2004-2006); Deputy Chief of Mission at U.S. Embassy Praia, Cape Verde (2001-2003); Political Officer at U.S. Embassy Antananarivo, Madagascar (1995-1998); Political, Economic, and Consular Officer at U.S. Embassy Banjul, The Gambia (1993-1995); and General Services Officer at U.S. Embassy Lagos, Nigeria (1991-1993). In Washington, his assignments include Director of the State Department's Office of East African Affairs (2007-2009) and Country Officer for Ethiopia (1998-2001). Ambassador Knight has received numerous Department of State awards including Superior and Meritorious Honor Awards and the Expeditionary Service Award.
Prior to the Foreign Service, Ambassador Knight worked as an economic development specialist for the United States Agency for International Development. A combat veteran, Ambassador Knight received the Bronze Star for his service as an infantry officer in South Vietnam. He was awarded a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago.