Ambassador Joan Polaschik’s term ended on July 26, 2019.
Ambassador Polaschik assumed her duties as Acting Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs on August 30, 2017. A career Foreign Service Officer with the rank of Minister Counselor, Ambassador Polaschik served most recently as the U.S. Ambassador to the People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria, August 2014- July 2017. Her career has focused on the Middle East and North Africa, with assignments as Director of the State Department’s Office of Egypt and Levant Affairs and Director of the Office of Israel and Palestinian Affairs; Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Embassy in Tripoli, Libya; Regional Refugee Coordinator based at the U.S. Embassy in Amman, Jordan; Political Officer in Tunisia; and other staff-level assignments in the Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs. She also has served in Azerbaijan and Uzbekistan.
Ambassador Polaschik received a B.A. from the University of Virginia and an M.S. from Georgetown University. She speaks Arabic and French, and some Azerbaijani and Russian.