Irvin “Irv” Hicks Jr. joined the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL) in September 2020 after serving as Senior Negotiator with the Bureau of Political-Military Affairs’ Office of Security Negotiations and Agreements, and as the Foreign Policy Advisor (POLAD) for the Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa based in Djibouti. As POLAD, Mr. Hicks advised the Commanding General (two-star) and his staff on foreign policy matters related to the command’s mission and activities in 12 countries throughout East Africa.
A career member of the Senior Foreign Service, Mr. Hicks also served as Deputy Chief of Mission for U.S. Embassy Nouakchott, Mauritania. His Washington, D.C. assignments include the Office of Management Policy, Right-sizing and Innovation, and the Africa Bureau where he served as a Management Counselor rover where he supported U.S. missions in West Africa engaged in the fight against the Ebola pandemic. Prior to joining the State Department, Mr. Hicks worked for several non-government agencies that included the African American Institute, Entrepreneurs International, and the U.S.-South African Leadership Exchange Program. He was also a corporate executive for General Motors’ Africa and Middle East Operations. Additional assignments with the State Department include Guinea, Nigeria, Brazil, Gabon, Sierra Leone, Mauritius , and Burundi.
Upon graduating from grade school in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania and high school in Berlin, West Germany; Mr. Hicks received his undergraduate degree from George Washington University where he majored in International Affairs and African studies. Mr. Hicks also received a Masters of Arts degree in Law and Diplomacy from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, and a Masters of Arts degree in National Security Studies from the Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island.
Proficient in French, Mr. Hicks has also studied Portuguese, German, Arabic, Chinese , and Amharic.
Mr. Hicks’ Department of State awards include two Meritorious Service Increases, two Superior Honor Awards, the $10,000 ICASS Outstanding Leadership Award, and several Meritorious Honor awards.
Department of Defense awards include the Office of the Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Joint Meritorious Civilian Service Award and the Joint Civilian Service Commendation Award.
Mr. Hicks is currently president of the Thursday Luncheon Group (TLG), the Department’s oldest affinity group that advocates for the recruitment, advancement, retention, and empowerment of African-American and other under-represented Foreign and Civil Service Officers in support of the Department’s Diversity and Inclusion Strategy.