with Ambassador Genta Hawkins Holmes
University of California Davis, Spring Term, 2005

Ambassador  Syllabus Countries Guests

Hon. Genta Hawkins Holmes

Ambassador Genta Hawkins Holmes has had a long and distinguished career as a member of the Foreign Service.

She recently returned to California after serving as the United States Ambassador to the Commonwealth of Australia.

Before that, and immediately prior to becoming a Diplomat in Residence at the University of California at Davis, Ambassador Holmes was Director General of the Foreign Service and Director of Personnel for the Department of State (1992-1995). She was America's first Ambassador to the Republic of Namibia (1990-1992), following her assignment as Deputy Chief of Mission in the U.S. Embassy in South Africa at the time of the transition (1989-1990).

She was Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince during a tense and violent period (1986-1988), and in Malawi (1984-1986). Ambassador Holmes received her first Presidential appointment in 1979 as the Assistant Administrator for Legislative Affairs of the Agency for International Development. This followed a year working for Congress as an American Political Science Association Fellow (the first woman selected by the Department of State - 1977-1978).

Mrs. Holmes served as Chief of the Economic/Commercial Section at the American Embassy in Nassau. Other overseas assignments include Embassies in Paris and Abidjan the Ivory Coast.

She received a BA in International Relations (magna cum laude) from the University of Southern California in 1962 and pursued graduate studies at the London School of Economics and Political Science on a Rotary International Fellowship from 1962-1963.

Ambassador Holmes speaks French, and holds both the Presidential and a Superior Honor Awards of the Department of State. She is married to Michael Dayton Holmes, a former Marine and Vietnam Veteran. 

Last revised
February 23, 2005
Copyright Genta Hawkins Holmes and Geoffrey Wandesforde-Smith, 2003, 2004, 2005. All federal and state copyrights reserved for all original material presented in this course through any medium, including lecture or print. Home Page