Ambassador Jeanine Jackson is a retired Senior Foreign Service Officer and a retired U.S. Army Colonel. Her significant contributions over her 30-year career have positively impacted the conduct of diplomacy and development, execution of State Department management functions, interagency coordination, and the mentoring of Foreign Service and military officers.
As Post Management Officer for the Soviet Union at the time of its dissolution, Ambassador Jackson served as a key coordinator from Washington and in the field in the establishment of U.S. Embassies in 13 new countries, following the collapse of Soviet rule in December, 1991. Ambassador Jackson established programs to protect U.S. civilian, military, and local staff in Hong Kong during the British Colony’s reversion to Chinese sovereignty in 1997. After the horrific al Qaeda bombing of the U.S. Embassy in Nairobi, Kenya in 1989, she reestablished Embassy management operations and infrastructure, and the start of reconstructing a new U.S. Embassy.
Ambassador Jackson led the team that reopened the U.S. Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan in 2001. She then returned to Kabul to serve as the Embassy Management Counselor from 2002 to 2003, making significant contributions in establishing standard operating procedures and, most important, transitioning our operations in Kabul from an expeditionary mission into a fully functioning U.S. Embassy. There were no procedures. Her creative work and innovative responses under difficult and often unanticipated and dangerous challenges, helped guide how the Department opened other U.S. missions in dangerous areas, such as the 2018 re-opening of U.S. Embassy Mogadishu, Somalia.
Her demonstrated accomplishments inspired the Department’s leadership to reassign Ambassador Jackson from Kabul to Washington to serve as the Department of State’s Management Coordinator responsible for the Inter-Agency effort to re-establish the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, Iraq in 2004. As the Management Counselor of Embassy Baghdad 2009-11, as U.S. forces withdrew from Iraq, she spearheaded a multi-agency task force that planned and executed the transition of support for the U.S. Embassy from the Department of Defense to the Department of State responsibility. In recognition of her remarkable service, Ambassador Jackson received the Secretary’s Distinguished Honor Award.
Ambassador Jackson served as Ambassador twice, first to Burkina Faso (2006-2009), a highly volatile region at the center of violent extremism in Africa, where she successfully coordinated the U.S. interagency and allied countries, the establishment of an effective counter terrorism operation. And to Malawi (2011-2014), where she promoted a highly successful training program that enabled Malawi to become an important African state in peacekeeping operations. She also led a successful development and governance program that distinguished Malawi as one of Africa’s strongest democracies.
In retirement, Ambassador Jackson trained U.S. Army Corps and Division level officers on the interagency process. She serves on the Board of Directors for AFRICAP, a private equity fund focused on business development in Africa; and AGE Africa, providing educational and life skills opportunities for thousands of girls in Malawi.