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Name: Gross, Kenneth
Current Position: Previous Ambassador

The ambassador to Tajikistan, which is the poorest country of all the former Soviet republics, is Kenneth E. Gross, Jr., who is familiar with Tajikistan from his earlier tour there as the Deputy Chief of Mission from 2002 to 2004. He was nominated by President Obama for his current posting in June 2009, confirmed by the Senate in August 2009, and arrived in Tajikistan in late September. 

Born circa 1953, Gross is a career member of the Senior Foreign Service, which he joined in 1987.  He earned a B.A. in History from Auburn University in 1975, a J.D. from the University of Georgia School of Law in 1978, and an M.S. in National Security Strategy from the National War College. 
At the State Department, Gross’s early overseas postings included Port-au-Prince, Haiti; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; Kathmandu, Nepal; and Frankfurt, Germany.  He has also served two stints in Iraq, first as Principal Officer at the Regional Embassy Office in Basrah, where his office represented the U.S. in the four southern provinces, and later as the director of the newly formed Office of Provincial Affairs, which oversees Provincial Reconstruction Teams. At State Department headquarters, Gross has served in the Bureau of Economic, Energy and Business Affairs as an aviation negotiator, in the Bureau of European Affairs as desk officer for Austria, and in the Bureau of Intelligence and Research as an intelligence analyst. Gross has also served as a Career Development Officer for senior-level officers in the Human Resources Bureau and as director of the Middle East Partnership Initiative Office in the Near Eastern Affairs Bureau
Gross speaks Tajik, German, and French. 
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