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Biography of Ambassador Kenneth Merten

Kenneth Merten - United States Ambassador to the Republic of Croatia (Photo Credit: State Dept.)

Kenneth Merten
U. S. Ambassador to the Republic of Croatia

Ambassador Designate Kenneth Merten was confirmed by the full Senate on March 30, 2012, and will assume duties in the fall of 2012.  He received his letters of accreditation from Secretary Hillary Clinton on October 3, 2012.  
Hoyt Brian Yee is currently serving as Charge d’Affaires ad interim.

Kenneth Merten, the United States Ambassador to the Republic of Croatia, presented his credentials to President Ivo Josipović on October 30, 2012.

Kenneth Merten is a career member of the senior Foreign Service; he joined the diplomatic corps in 1987 and most recently served as Ambassador to Haiti. He also served as a Deputy Executive Secretary to U.S. Secretary of State Clinton and earlier to U.S. Secretary of State Rice. He was awarded the 2011 Ryan C. Crocker Award for Outstanding Leadership in Expeditionary Diplomacy for his extraordinary leadership in the wake of the 2010 Haiti earthquake.

Ambassador Merten’s overseas assignments include the U.S. Embassy in Paris, the U.S. Mission to the European Union in Brussels, the U.S. Embassy in Bonn, and three tours at the U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Ambassador Merten’s other Washington experience includes two assignments in the State Department Operations Center, which supports the daily work and travel of the Secretary of State. He also has worked in the Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs and on the Cuba Desk, and worked for the Special Advisors on Haiti in 1993-1994.

Ambassador Merten holds a B.A. from Miami University in Ohio, and a Masters in Public Administration from American University. Studies at the Université d’Aix-Marseille in France and at Karl Franzens Universität in Austria complement his other academic work. He received an honorary Doctorate from Miami University in 2010. In July 2012, Ambassador Merten was decorated by Haiti’s President, Michel Martelly, with the Grande Croix of Honor and Merit, the fourth foreign diplomat to receive that honor in over 200 years of Haiti’s independence.

Ambassador Merten was born in St. Louis, Missouri and considers Hudson, Ohio his hometown. He is married to Susan Greenman Merten and has two children.