Ryan Crocker is Kissinger Senior Fellow at the Jackson Institute for Global Affairs at Yale. He is on leave as Dean, Executive Professor, and Edward and Howard Kruse Endowed Chair at the Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M University.
He retired from the Foreign Service in April 2009 after a career of over 37 years. He served as an Ambassador five times: Iraq (2007-2009), Pakistan (2004-2007), Syria (1998-2001), Kuwait (1994-1997), and Lebanon (1990-1993). He was a member of the faculty at the National War College 2003-2004. From May to August 2003, he was in Baghdad as the first Director of Governance for the Coalition Provisional Authority. He served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs from August 2001 to May 2003. Since joining the Foreign Service in 1971, he has had assignments in Iran, Qatar, Iraq, and Egypt, as well as Washington. He was assigned to the American Embassy in Beirut during the Israeli invasion of Lebanon in 1982 and the bombings of the embassy and the Marine barracks in 1983.
Born in Spokane, Washington, he grew up in an Air Force family, attending schools in Morocco, Canada and Turkey, as well as the U.S. He received a B.A. in English in 1971 and an honorary Doctor of Laws degree in 2001 from Whitman College (Washington). He is a member of the College's Board of Overseers.
Crocker received the Presidential Medal of Freedom, America's highest civilian award, in 2009. He received the Presidential Distinguished Service Award in 2007 and 1994 and the Department of Defense Medal for Distinguished Civilian Service in 2008 and 1997. He also holds the Secretary of State's Award for Distinguished Service, the Distinguished Honor Award and Award for Valor as well as the American Foreign Service Association Rivkin Award for creative dissent. In January 2002, he was sent to Afghanistan to reopen the American Embassy in Kabul. He subsequently received the Robert C. Frasure Memorial Award for "exceptional courage and leadership" in Afghanistan. In September 2004, President Bush conferred on him the personal rank of Career Ambassador, the highest in the Foreign Service. In May 2009, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced the establishment of the Ryan C. Crocker Award for Outstanding Achievement in Expeditionary Diplomacy.
He is married to Christine Barnes Crocker, also a member of the Foreign Service prior to her retirement in 2002. They met in Baghdad in 1979. She holds the State Department's Award for Heroism.
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