Joseph E. Macmanus

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Person.png Joseph E. Macmanus  Rdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
Joseph Macmanus 2014.jpg
Joseph Macmanus in 2014
Alma materUniversity of Notre Dame, University at Buffalo
Diplomat working for Condoleezza Rice and Hillary Clinton

Employment.png Acting Assistant Secretary of State for Legislative Affairs

In office
January 20, 2017 - December 20, 2017
Preceded byJulia Frifield

Employment.png Acting Coordinator for Iran Nuclear Implementation

In office
July 21, 2015 - September 25, 2015

Employment.png Acting Assistant Secretary of State for Legislative Affairs

In office
March 14, 2011 - August 4, 2011

Joseph Estey Macmanus[1] is an American diplomat who served as Executive Secretary of the United States Department of State from 2014 to 2017.[2] Prior to that, he served as the U.S. Ambassador to International Organizations in Vienna from 2012 to 2014,[3] as well as interim coordinator for efforts to implement President Barack Obama's Iran Nuclear Deal in 2015.[4]

He was President Donald Trump's nominee to become United States Ambassador to Colombia,[5] an important post (drugs, Venezuela) but the nomination didn't pass Congress.


Macmanus is a career foreign service officer, having entered the Foreign Service Institute in 1986. From 1986 until 2003, he served in various Public Diplomacy positions in Mexico, El Salvador, Poland, Belgium, and at the U.S. Information Agency headquarters in Washington, DC.

Macmanus was Assistant to the Deputy Director of USIA from 1995 until 1999, where he worked on a number of initiatives in democracy, human rights, (this undefined work has a certain spooky ring to it) and the consolidation of the propaganda unit U.S. Information Agency into the Department of State.

In his time at the State Department, he served as top aides to former Secretaries of State Condoleezza Rice and Hillary Clinton, helping to manage the Secretary's professional office and staff, and accompanied them on foreign travel. He was Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Legislative Affairs from 2005 to 2008, and again from 2011 to 2012.[6]

President Barack Obama appointed Macmanus to serve as U.S. Representative to the Vienna Office of the United Nations, as well as its representative to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in December 2011.[7] He came to international attention in 2013 when he accused Iran of deception at a meeting of the IAEA,[8] and then, with the Canadian, Australian and New Zealand envoys,[9] stormed out of the meeting after Iran criticised Israel.[10][11]

On November 29, 2017, President Donald Trump nominated Macmanus to serve as the United States Ambassador to Colombia.[12][13] His nomination as Ambassador drew criticism from Senate Republicans who did not want President Trump to nominate someone who worked closely with former Secretary Hillary Clinton.[14] In May 2019, it was announced that Philip Goldberg would replace Macmanus as nominee to be the next United States Ambassador to Colombia.


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