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: Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste
CANDIDATE: Donna Ann Welton
Donna Ann Welton, a career member of the Senior Foreign Service with the rank of Minister-Counselor, currently serves as Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary for Programs and Operations in the Bureau of Political-Military Affairs, after nearly two years as Senior Advisor in the Office of Security Negotiations and Agreements. Prior to that, she was Assistant Chief of Mission in Kabul, Afghanistan, arriving after three years as Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Embassy in Helsinki, Finland, including eighteen months as Chargé d’affaires, a.i. Earlier, she was on detail to the Department of Defense as the acting Director for Southeast Asia in the Office of the Secretary of Defense (Policy). Welton began her career with the United States Information Agency, serving in the Republic of Korea as an Assistant Cultural Affairs Officer in Seoul and as American Center Director in Daegu, then as American Center Director in Fukuoka, Japan before leaving to pursue graduate study. Welton returned to the Foreign Service in 2000, serving in public diplomacy positions in Tokyo, Nagoya, Washington, and Jakarta, and as Consul General in Sapporo, Japan. She then became Counselor for Public Affairs in Kabul, followed by service at the U.S. Mission to the United Nations as Deputy Director of Communications and Public Affairs. Welton also served as Minister-Counselor for Political Affairs at the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo, Japan. Welton’s deep and substantive background in East Asian Affairs, expertise in public diplomacy, and demonstrated ability to lead interagency teams make her a well-qualified candidate for Ambassador to Timor-Leste.
Welton earned her A.B. from Yale University and holds a master’s degree in Strategic Studies from the Army War College. She speaks Japanese fluently, and also speaks Korean, Indonesian, German, some Dari, and Finnish.