Prior to assuming her role as Assistant Secretary for Consular Affairs in August 2021, Ambassador Bitter was the Dean of the Leadership and Management School at the Foreign Service Institute and, from 2016 – 2020, U.S. Ambassador to the Lao People’s Democratic Republic. Her Washington experience includes tours in the Executive Secretariat, Special Assistant to Secretary of State Colin Powell, and Director of the State Department Operations Center. She has served overseas as Consul General in Ho Chi Minh City; Consular Chief in Amman, Jordan; and Nonimmigrant Visa Chief in London, as well as tours in Bogota and Mexico City. Ambassador Bitter is a career Senior Foreign Service officer and joined the State Department in 1994.