Ambassador to Kosovo: Who Is Tracey Ann Jacobson?

Sunday, April 01, 2012
The Balkan nation of Kosovo, which owes its existence to U.S.-led intervention in 1999 against the nation of Serbia, of which it was a part, is welcoming a new ambassador from Washington. On January 23, 2012, President Obama announced his intent to nominate Tracey Ann Jacobson as the next Ambassador to Kosovo. She was confirmed on March 29. This is Jacobson’s third ambassadorial appointment, and she will be only the third chief of mission assigned to the U.S. embassy in Pristina.
 
The daughter of John and Barbara Thomas, Jacobson was born in 1965. She earned her B.A. at Johns Hopkins University in 1987, and her M.A. at the Johns Hopkins University Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies in 1988. She joined the Foreign Service in June 1988. Jacobson had early career foreign postings in Seoul, South Korea; Nassau, Bahamas; and Moscow, Russia. Her domestic assignments included the Bureau of Intelligence and Research, the Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs, and the Office of the Under Secretary for Management.
 
Jacobson served as deputy executive secretary at the National Security Council, where she facilitated the development of foreign policy initiatives for the National Security Advisor and the President, for several years ending in 2000. She served as deputy chief of mission at the U.S. embassy in Riga, Latvia, from 2000 to 2003. Jacobson served her first ambassadorship at the embassy in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, from August 2003 to July 2006. Before assuming her post, she said that the Turkmen dictatorship had “chosen a gloomy path of development copied from the Soviet model—retaining a single-party system and a strictly-controlled command economy.”  She then served as ambassador at the embassy in Dushanbe, Tajikistan, from August 2006 until July 2009. She returned to a stateside job, becoming deputy director of the Foreign Service Institute, which is the educational arm of the State Department.   
 
Jacobson has studied French, Russian, Spanish, Korean, and Tajik.
-Matt Bewig
 

The Ambassador Series: Featuring Tracey Ann Jacobson (by Paul Palazzolo, WSEC-TV) 

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