Hugh Dugan is the Principal Deputy Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs, strengthening diplomatic efforts to secure the safe return of Americans held hostage overseas. Working closely with foreign governments, the Hostage Recovery Fusion Cell and the families of American hostages, he represents the United States on hostage-related issues.

During his career in diplomacy the U.S. Department of State honored his performance with five commendations spanning thirty-two years. He served as U.S. Delegate to the United Nations and as Senior Adviser to eleven US Ambassadors to the United Nations from 1989 to 2015. He managed a broad range of matters enabling effective, strategic US participation at the United Nations. In 2002 he served as senior fellow and advisor to US Senator Michael B. Enzi (R-WY), Ranking Member on the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s Subcommittee on International Operations and Terrorism. Prior postings included the State Department’s Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs, the American Consulate General in Bermuda, and the American Embassy in Mexico City.

Until recently Mr. Dugan was the Sharkey Visiting Scholar on UN Studies at the School of Diplomacy and International Relations, Seton Hall University, where he was professor of practice on UN Reform and UN Security Council Issues; and he was a frequent contributor in print and television media on international topics. Mr. Dugan has held civic leadership roles in activities related to youth, sports, culture, and foreign affairs. A frequent lecturer to university groups Mr. Dugan is sought out as an opinion leader on the practice of diplomacy, the United Nations, and the Olympic Movement.

Mr. Dugan earned degrees and honors from the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University (BSFS), the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy (MALD) as S. Pinkney Tuck Fellow, and the Wharton School of Business (MBA) as a State Department Fellow and holds certificates from the International Olympic Academy (Olympia, Greece). He has a fluency in Spanish.

U.S. Department of State

Welcome to the new State.gov

Our new design makes it easier to find and learn about the State Department’s programs and services—from passports and visas to learning how U.S. diplomacy benefits the American people.