Ambassador Jake Walles completed 35 years as a Foreign Service Officer in March 2017. He served twice as Chief of Mission, as Ambassador to Tunisia from July 2012 to September 2015 and as Consul General in Jerusalem from July 2005 to August 2009. After leaving government service, he joined the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace as a nonresident Senior Fellow in July 2017.
In the Department of State, he also served as Senior Adviser on Foreign Fighters in the Bureau of Counterterrorism from September 2015 to March 2017 and as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State in the Bureau for Near Eastern Affairs — responsible for U.S. policy with respect to Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon and the Palestinians — from June 2010 to March 2012.
Ambassador Walles also served as the Director of the Office of Israel and Palestinian Affairs from 1998 to 2001 and as Deputy Principal Officer at the U.S. Consulate General in Jerusalem from 1996 to 1998. For more than twenty years, he was an active participant in U.S. efforts to promote peace in the Middle East dating back to the 1991 Madrid Conference.
Other assignments included: Deputy Chief of Mission in Athens, First Secretary for Economic Affairs in Tel Aviv, Vice Consul in Amsterdam, and Special Assistant to the Under Secretary for Economic Affairs in Washington.
From September 2009 to June 2010, Ambassador Walles was the Cyrus Vance Fellow for Diplomatic Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations.
Ambassador Walles was a career member of the Senior Foreign Service who reached the rank of Minister Counselor. He is the recipient of Presidential Meritorious Rank Awards in 2007 and 2012, and the Department of State’s Distinguished Honor award in 2016. He also received Superior Honor Awards in 2001 and 1994 for his work promoting peace in the Middle East. The President of Tunisia named him “Grand Officier de l’Ordre de la République” in 2015 in recognition of his efforts to advance relations between the U.S. and Tunisia.
He was born in Wilmington, Delaware and is a graduate of Wesleyan University and the School of Advanced International Studies of Johns Hopkins University.