Thomas R. Pickering

US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs 1997-2000

US Ambassador to the UN 1989-92



"GLF provides quiet, experienced and confidential advice and counsel to leaders around the world with a recognised need for such help. Disinterested support is a rare and precious commodity and GLF is unique in making it available."

Thomas R. Pickering
GLF Member

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Jaswant Singh

Foreign Minister, India 1998-2002
Defence Minister, India 2001
Finance Minister, India 1996, 2002-04

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Marzuki Darusman

Attorney General, Indonesia 1999 to 2001

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Prime Minister, Jamaica 1992-2006

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His Royal Highness Prince El Hassan bin Talal

Crown Prince of Jordan 1965 - 99

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Vaira Vike-Freiberga

President of Latvia, 1999 – 2007

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Cassam Uteem

President, Mauritius 1992-2002

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Vicente Fox

President, Mexico, 2000-06

New Zealand
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Mike Moore

Prime Minister of New Zealand 1990
Director General of the World Trade Organisation 1999-2002

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Alvaro de Soto

UN Under-Secretary-General 1999-2007

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Fidel Ramos

President, Republic of the Philippines 1992-98

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Moustapha Niasse

Prime Minister of Senegal 1983 & 2000-01

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Donald Kaberuka

Finance Minister, Rwanda, 1997-2005
President, African Development Bank 2005-2015

South Africa
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F.W. de Klerk

President, Republic of South Africa 1989-94

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Javier Solana

Secretary General, Council of the European Union 1999-2009
Secretary General, NATO 1995-1999
Foreign Minister, Spain 1992-1995

Sri Lanka
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Chandrika Kumaratunga

President, Sri Lanka 1994-2005

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Lawrence Gonzi

Prime Minister, Malta 2004-13
Minister of Finance, 2004-08
Minister of Social Policy, 1998-2004

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Lakhdar Brahimi

Foreign Minister, Algeria 1991-93
UN Special Adviser to the Secretary-General 2004-05

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Armen Sarkissian

Prime Minister, Armenia 1996-97

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Kevin Rudd

Prime Minister of Australia, 2007-2010 and 2013
Foreign Minister,  2010-2012

Gareth Evans

Foreign Minister, Australia 1988-96
President and CEO of the International Crisis Group 2000-09

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Wolfgang Schüssel

Austria, Federal Chancellor 2000 – 2007
Foreign Minister 1995 - 2000

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Herve Latsous

Herve Latsous

United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations 2011 - 2017

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Joe Clark

Prime Minister, Canada 1979-80
Secretary of State for External Affairs 1984-1991

Louise Fréchette

UN Deputy Secretary-General, 1998 – 2006

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Ghassan Salamé

UN Special Advisor to Secretary-General, 2003-06
Lebanese Minister of Culture, 2000-03

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Carl Bildt

Prime Minister, Sweden 1991-94
Foreign Minister 2006-14
UN Special Envoy to the Balkans 1999-2001

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Micheline Calmy-Rey

President of the Swiss Confederation 2007 and 2011

Pascal Couchepin

President, Swiss Confederation 2003 & 2008

Kaspar Villiger

President, Swiss Confederation 1995 & 2002

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Salim Salim

Prime Minister of Tanzania, 1984 – 1985
Secretary-General of the OAU, 1989 – 2001

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José Ramos-Horta

President, Timor-Leste 2007-12

Prime Minister 2006-07

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Hikmet Çetin

Deputy Prime Minister, Turkey, 1978-79 and 1995
Foreign Minister, 1991-94

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Chester A. Crocker

US Assistant Secretary for African Affairs 1981-89

Tom Daschle

US Senator 1987-2005
Member of the US House of Representatives 1979-1987
Majority Leader of the US Senate

Donald F. McHenry

US Ambassador to the UN 1979-81

Thomas R. Pickering

US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs 1997-2000
US Ambassador to the UN 1989-92

United Kingdom
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Catherine Ashton

Catherine Ashton

High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy 2009-14
Vice President of the European Commission 2009-14

Lynda Chalker

Minister of Overseas Development, UK 1989-97

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Enrique Iglesias

Foreign Minister, Uruguay, 1985-1988
President of the Inter-American Development Bank 1988-2005

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Juan Gabriel Valdés

Minister for Foreign Affairs, Chile, 1999
Chilean Ambassador to the UN, 2000-03

Côte d'Ivoire
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Amara Essy

Foreign Minister, Côte d'Ivoire 1990-2000
Secretary General, OAU 2001
Chairman, AU Commission 2002-3

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Mohamed ElBaradei

Director General,  International Atomic Energy Agency 1997-2009
Interim Vice President, Egypt 2013

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Elisabeth Rehn

UN Under-Secretary-General, SRSG in Bosnia and Herzegovina 1998-99
UN Special Rapporteur for Human Rights 1995-97
Finnish Minister of Defence 1990-95 and Equality Affairs 1991-95

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Eduardo Stein

Vice President, Guatemala, 2004-08
Foreign Minister 1996-2000


Thomas R. Pickering - Biographical Information

US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs 1997-2000
US Ambassador to the UN 1989-92


Public Career

In a diplomatic career spanning five decades, Thomas R. Pickering was U.S. Ambassador to the Russian Federation, India, Israel, El Salvador, Nigeria, and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. Mr. Pickering also served on assignments in Zanzibar and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

Thomas Pickering served in the U.S. Navy from 1956-1959, and later in the Naval Reserve to the grade of Lieutenant Commander. Between 1959 and 1961, he was assigned to the Bureau of Intelligence and Research of the State Department and later to the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency. From 1962 to 1964 Thomas Pickering worked in Geneva as political adviser to the U.S. Delegation to the 18-Nation Disarmament Conference.

From 1973 to 1974 Thomas Pickering was Executive Secretary of the Department of State and Special Assistant to Secretaries William P. Rogers and Henry A. Kissinger. Between 1974–1978 Thomas Pickering was appointed U.S. Ambassador to Jordan and from 1978 to 1981, he served as Assistant Secretary of State for Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affair. He was U.S. Ambassador to Nigeria between 1981–1983, U.S. Ambassador to El Salvador between 1983–1985 and then U.S. Ambassador to Israel between 1985–1988. He won the Distinguished Presidential Award in 1983 and again in 1986.

From 1989 to 1992 Thomas Pickering was U.S. Ambassador and Representative to the United Nations in New York, where he played a critical role in shaping the UN Security Council’s response to Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait.

Thomas Pickering served as U.S. Ambassador to India from 1992–1993 and then U.S. Ambassador to Russia from 1993–1996 before his appointment from 1997–2000 as U.S. Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs, the number three position at the State Department.

In 1996, Thomas Pickering was awarded the Department of State’s highest award – the Distinguished Service Award - and he holds the personal rank of Career Ambassador, the highest in the U.S. Foreign Service.

Activity after Public Service

After being briefly President of the Eurasia Foundation, a Washington-based organization that makes small grants and loans in the states of the former Soviet Union, Thomas Pickering joined The Boeing Company in 2001 where he was for five and a half years Senior Vice President International Relations. He was also a member of the Executive Council of The Boeing Company. At Boeing he was responsible for the company’s relations with foreign governments and the company's globalization. Since December 2006, Thomas Pickering has been Vice Chairman at Hills and Co which provides advice and counsel to a number of major U.S. enterprises.

Together with fellow GLF Member, Lakhdar Brahimi, Thomas Pickering co-chaired an international task force on Afghanistan, organised by the Century Foundation. Their findings and recommendations sought to determine what kind of political path might lead to ending the war. (This report can be viewed at

Thomas Pickering has been a Member of the Global Leadership Foundation since 2009. He served as Chairman of GLF’s US Advisory Committee from 2006-2015 and was appointed to serve on the GLF Board in 2016. Thomas Pickering has been involved in a GLF project in Central America.

Memberships and Affiliations

  • Chairman of US State Department Benghazi Accountability Review Board Oct-Dec 2012
  • Chairman of the Board of the American Academy of Diplomacy
  • Chairman of the Board, Washington Institute for Foreign Affairs
  • Chairman of the Board, Center for the Study of the Presidency and Congress
  • Member and former Chairman and Co-Chairman of the Board of the International Crisis Group
  • Member of the International Institute of Strategic Studies (Former Board member)
  • Member of the Council on Foreign Relations (Former trustee)
  • Member of the National Bureau of Asian Research (Former Advisory group Member)
  • Member of the Global Panel Foundation based in Berlin and Prague
  • Former Board member of the American Iranian Council
  • Member of the Constitution Project's bipartisan Liberty and Security Committee
  • Member of the Advisory Board of Eurasia Group
  • Trustee Emeritus, Aspen Institute
  • Trustee, George C Marshall Foundation
  • Chairman of the Board, Institute for the Study of Diplomacy, School of Foreign Service, Georgetown University
  • Co-Chairman of the Board, International Tax and Investment Center
  • Kennan Institute Council, Woodrow Wilson Center for Scholars
  • Chair of US Board, Moscow School of Politics
  • Chair of Advisory Council and former Co-Chairman of the Board, United Nations Association of the United States of America/United Nations Fund
  • Trustee, United States-Russia Business Council
  • Former President, Eurasia Foundation
  • Special Advisor, Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Member, Advisory Council, United States Institute for Peace
  • Member, Advisory Council, National Committee on American Foreign Policy
  • Board Member, Center for Excellence in Education
  • Board member, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientist
  • Member, Advisory Council, The Stanley Foundation
  • Special Advisory, The Brookings Institute