REPORT FOR THE COMMITTEE ON FOREIGN RELATIONS
UNITED STATES SENATE
SUBJECT: Ambassadorial Nomination: Certificate of Demonstrated Competence — Foreign Service Act, Section 304(a)(4)
POST: Republic of Tajikistan
CANDIDATE: John Mark Pommersheim
John Mark Pommersheim, a career member of the Senior Foreign Service, class of Counselor, is currently the Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Embassy in Astana, Kazakhstan, a position he has held since 2015. He is a talented officer who has devoted his 28-year career to service in Europe and Asia, including the former Soviet Union, advancing U.S. priorities ranging from counterterrorism to promoting U.S. business. Among the Department’s best Russian linguists, he excels in communicating U.S. policy priorities. In a career marked by exceptional success in challenging regions, he would be an excellent choice for U.S. Ambassador to Tajikistan.
Mr. Pommersheim has also served the Department of State as Director, Office of South Caucasus Affairs and Regional Conflicts (2013 -2015), Deputy Political Counselor, U.S. Embassy Tokyo, Japan (2010-2013), Una Chapman Cox Fellow (2007-2008) and Consul General/Principal Officer, U.S. Consulate Vladivostok, Russia (2004-2007). He was Political Officer/External Unit Chief, U.S. Embassy Beijing, China (2001-2004), Russian Affairs Officer, Office of Russian Affairs (1997-1999), Political Officer, U.S. Embassy Bonn, Germany (1995-1997), Staff Assistant to the Ambassador, U.S. Embassy Bonn, Germany (1994-1995), Political-Economic Officer, U.S. Embassy Minsk, Belarus (1992-1994) and Consular Officer, U.S. Embassy Beijing, China (1990-1991). Mr. Pommersheim was a U.S. Exhibit Guide, United States Information Agency, Tbilisi/Tashkent/Irkutsk, USSR (1987-1988), a Teaching Assistant at Columbia University/Barnard College (1988-1989) and a Production Assistant for CNN in Moscow, USSR (1986).
Mr. Pommersheim earned a B.A. from Bucknell University and a M.A. from Columbia University. He studied at the Pushkin Language Institute, Moscow on a U.S. Department of Defense Scholarship. He is the recipient of 10 notable State Department awards, including runner-up for the Department of State Director General’s Award for Reporting and Analysis. In addition to Russian he speaks Chinese, Japanese, German, Basic French and Basic Kazakh.