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Name: Thompson, Winston
Current Position: Ambassador

A longtime cabinet minister and diplomat, Winston Thompson came out of retirement in April 2009 to serve as Fiji’s ambassador to the United States. His appointment was announced one week before Fijian President Ratu Josefa Iloilo suspended his nation’s constitution. Thompson has also served as Fiji’s representative to Canada since February 2010.

Thompson received his education in Fiji, New Zealand, Trinidad and Tobago and Australia.
His government career began in 1962 when he joined Fiji’s Department of Agriculture as an agricultural officer. Eight years later, he became the director of agriculture, serving until 1973.
Thompson then became the secretary for agriculture, fisheries and forests.
In 1978, he was made the secretary for finance, and five years later, became the secretary for the Public Service Commission.
Thompson relocated to New York City in 1985 to serve as Fiji’s representative to the United Nations.
After six years at the UN, he returned home to serve as the secretary for tourism, civil aviation and energy for one year.
From 1992 to 1994, Thompson was the secretary for the public service.
He left government service in 1995 to become chief executive of Telecom Fiji Ltd. During his tenure with the company, which ended with the announcement of his retirement in December 2004, Thompson oversaw the modernization of Fiji’s telecommunication infrastructure.
In 2000, questions arose over whether Telecom Fiji had anything to do with the interruption of phone calls between journalists and deposed Prime Minister Mahendra Chaudhry when the conversations addressed sensitive material. Both the Fiji army and Thompson said publicly that no order was given for the company to monitor the phone calls.
Outside of work, Thompson has been the chairman of the Fiji Museum Board of Trustees and of the Fiji Hardwood Corporation.
He is married to Queenie Thompson, who is, according to The Washington Diplomat, a “colorful, nonstop storyteller” who enjoys informing others about her homeland’s history and culture. The couple has four children.
Biography (Fiji Embassy)
Queen Bee (by Gail Scott, Washington Diplomat)
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