Carol Z. Perez
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Carol Z. Perez

Carol Z. Perez
Carol Perez 2015.jpg
Director General of the Foreign Service

February 1, 2019
PresidentDonald Trump
Arnold A. Chacón
United States Ambassador to Chile

October 13, 2016[1] - January 31, 2019
PresidentBarack Obama
Donald Trump
DeputyFebruary 1, 2019
Michael A. Hammer
Baxter Hunt (acting)
Personal details
BornCleveland, Ohio, United States
Alma materHiram College
George Washington University

Carol Zelis Perez is a career Foreign Service Officer, currently serving as the Director General of the Foreign Service. Previously, Perez served as the U.S. Ambassador to Chile from October 2016 to January 2019.

Early life and education

Perez was born in Cleveland, Ohio, and graduated from Marymount High School in nearby Garfield Heights in 1971. She earned a bachelor of arts in political science at Hiram College in 1975 and subsequently a master's degree in health care administration at George Washington University.[2]


Secretary of State Mike Pompeo ceremonially swears Perez in as Director General of the Foreign Service and Director of Human Resources in 2019

Perez joined the U.S. State Department in 1987. Most of her assignments have been administrative or consular in nature, with early postings as a special assistant in the office of the Under Secretary of State for Management, as operations officer in the State Department Operations Center, and as a consular officer in Madrid.

In 1994, Perez was made administrative and human relations officer at the U.S. Embassy in Rome. She returned to Washington in 1997 for a series of assignments, first as a supervisory general services officer, deputy executive director in the Executive Secretariat; then the following year as office director in the Secretariat staff office; and beginning in 1999 as deputy executive secretary. She was assigned overseas in 2001 as the Consul General in Barcelona.

Two years later, she was reassigned to Washington as Deputy Executive Secretary of the department. Part of her duties were organizing and staffing trips made by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. In 2009, Perez was named Consul General in Milan.

Perez returned to Washington in 2011 as Deputy Assistant Secretary in the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs. The following year, she vouched for the department after auditors found the United States spent $200 million on a training program for Iraqi police.[2] She was named Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary in the bureau in 2013 and helped coordinate anti-drug-trafficking efforts in Haiti, Ukraine and the South China Sea. In January 2015, Perez became Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary in the Bureau of Human Resources.

In May 10, 2016, Perez was nominated by President Barack Obama to be U.S. Ambassador to Chile.[3] Perez testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on June 21, 2016,[4] and was confirmed on July 14, 2016.[5][6] Perez is the first ever woman ambassador accredited to Chile.[7]

On July 31, 2018 President Donald Trump announced his intent to nominate Perez as the Director General of the Foreign Service.[8] On August 1, 2018 her nomination was sent to the United States Senate.[9] She was confirmed by the Senate on a voice vote on January 2, 2019,[10] and sworn in on February 1, 2019.[11]

Personal life

Perez's family at her swearing-in ceremony in 2019

Perez and her husband, Al, have three children, Michael, Caroline and Marisa. In addition to English, Perez speaks Spanish and Italian.


  1. ^ Bustos, Pablo (October 13, 2016). "¿Quién es Carol Perez, la primera mujer embajadora de Estados Unidos en Chile?". Retrieved 2016.
  2. ^ a b "U.S. Ambassador to Chile: Who Is Carol Z. Perez?". September 10, 2016. Retrieved 2016.
  3. ^ "President Obama Announces More Key Administration Posts". White House. May 10, 2016. Retrieved 2016.
  4. ^ "Statement of Carol Perez, Nominee for U.S. Ambassador to Chile" (PDF). United States Senate. June 21, 2016. Retrieved 2016.
  5. ^ "PN1423 -- Carol Z. Perez -- Department of State". United States Congress. July 14, 2016. Retrieved 2016.
  6. ^ Lardner, Richard (July 15, 2016). "Senate confirms US ambassadors to 6 countries". Associated Press. Retrieved 2016.
  7. ^ McIntyre, Michael (September 30, 2016). "Garfield Heights native Carol Z. Perez (known then as Carol Zelis) to be sworn in as U.S. Ambassador to Chile". Retrieved 2016.
  8. ^ "President Donald J. Trump Announces Intent to Nominate and Appoint Personnel to Key Administration Posts". The White House. Retrieved 2018.
  9. ^ "Three Nominations Sent to the Senate Today". The White House. August 1, 2018. Retrieved 2018.
  10. ^ "PN2374 - Nomination of Carol Z. Perez for Department of State, 115th Congress (2017-2018)". January 2, 2019. Retrieved 2019.
  11. ^ "Ambassador Carol Z. Perez Sworn in as Director General of the Foreign Service and Director of Human Resources". U.S. Department of State. February 4, 2019. Retrieved 2019.

External links

Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
Michael A. Hammer
U.S. Ambassador to Chile
Preceded by
Arnold Chacón
Director General of the Foreign Service

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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