A career member of the Senior Foreign Service, John R. Bass has served as U.S. ambassador to Georgia since October 1, 2009.
Bass was born and raised in upstate New York, and is a graduate of Syracuse University.
He worked as a newspaper editor and as a political campaign consultant before joining the Foreign Service in 1988.
His early assignments for the State Department in Washington, DC, included work on Turkey, Cyprus, the Benelux countries, and NATO-Russia negotiations, while his embassy assignments included tours in Brussels, Belgium, and Ndjamena, Chad.
From 1998-2000, Bass was special assistant for Europe and Eurasia to Deputy Secretary of State Strobe Talbott, which included being a member of the U.S. negotiating team that worked on ending the war in Kosovo. He then was chief of staff to Talbott, coordinating policy and operational planning for negotiations with Russia on strategic arms reductions.
Bass served from 2002-2004 at the U.S. embassy in Rome, Italy, handling human rights, immigration, trafficking-in-persons and labor market reform.
From 2004-2005, Bass was a special advisor to Vice President Dick Cheney, offering advice on developments and policy in Europe and Eurasia.
Bass returned to the State Department from 2005-2008 to serve as director of the Operations Center.