Charles O. Cecil
Ambassador to the Republic of Niger

Charles O. Cecil presented his credentials as Ambassador to the Republic of Niger on September 6, 1996. Prior to his ambassadorship, he served in Washington as Deputy Director for West African Affairs from 1995 to 1996, overseeing U.S. relations with the nine Francophone countries of West Africa. He was Deputy Chief of Mission in Abidjan before he returned to Washington.

Ambassador Cecil joined the Foreign Service and was initally assigned to Kuwait in 1966. Following Kuwait, he went to Zanzibar for 2 years as political officer. In 1971, he was posted to Beirut to study Arabic, then went to Jeddah where he served as a political-military officer. After 2 years in Jeddah, Ambassador Cecil returned to Washington as the desk officer for Saudi Arabia. He was later assigned to the Bureau of Political-Military Affairs handling arms sales and security assistance issues in Sub-Saharan Africa. Ambassador Cecil was a Congressional Fellow on the staffs of Senator William Proxmire and Congressman Jim Leach until 1980. In 1980, Ambassador Cecil returned overseas to Mali where he served as Public Affairs Officer and Deputy Chief of Mission. He then went to Muscat in 1983 as Deputy Chief of Mission. Following Muscat, he became Director of the Foreign Service Institute's Arabic Language Field School in Tunis for 2 years. Ambassador Cecil then returned to Washington to become Deputy Director of the Office of Ecology, Health, and Conservation. And, from 1990 to 1992, he served as Senior Advisor for Environmental Affairs in the Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs.

Ambassador Cecil was born in Owensboro, Kentucky on February 13, 1940. He received a B.A. from the University of California, Berkeley in 1962, and an M.A. from Johns Hopkins University in 1964. Upon completion of his education, he served in the Air Force until 1966.

Ambassador Cecil has published articles in the Journal of Modern Affican Studies, The Middle East Journal, Our Sunday Visitor, and Aramco World.

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