Haitian-American Patrick Gaspard Named U.S. South African Ambassador

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Patrick Gaspard Named U.S. South African Ambassador

Haitian-American Patrick Gaspard has just been selected by U.S. President Barack Obama as Ambassador to South Africa. Originally from the Republic of Congo, his family immigrated to New York City when he was still a child. He has been involved in local and national politics almost three decades.

He began his career as a public servant working as a Deputy Assistant during New York Mayor David Dinkins term in office. That position led him to become head of the New York City Council. In 2003, he entered national politics and served as an advance man for Howard Dean's presidential campaign. Having acquired political chops, he got involved with union politics, holding the position of Executive Vice President and Political Director of Service Employees International Union.

Patrick Gaspard re-entered national politics again in 2008, helming the Obama campaign as National Political Director. After Barack Obama took office, Gaspard served as Special Advisor to the President, and also became Director of the Office of Political Affairs until 2011. In 2011, the Democratic National Committee appointed him its Executive Director, a position he currently holds.

Patrick Gaspard is a suitable choice as South African Ambassador. He played a pivotal role in the dissolution of apartheid politics during the Nelson Mandela era. He has also orchestrated U.S. relief-aid for Haiti after 2010's tumultuous earthquake. Ben Rhodes, Obama's Security Advisor, says Patrick Gaspard is the right choice because he is an intimate of the President, comes from the Congo, and "cares deeply about South Africa".

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Read more: barack obama, diaspora, ambassador, Haitian-American, South Africa, Patrick Gaspard, Congo, Newsletter Articles, People

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Reader Comments 1

Raymond Lafontant Jr says...

A GOOD CHOICE FOR THE US IF HE IS A CONNAISSEUR OF THIS PART OF AFRICA.

THE SITUATION THERE WILL BE DIFFICULT AFTER THE DEATH OF MANDELA.

IT WILL BE POLITIC AS USUAL AND THE PARTY HAS NO GOOD RESULTS FOR THE PEOPLE.

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