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Ambassador John M. Ordway

In September 2004, John  M. Ordway presented his credentials to President Nazarbayev as U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Kazakhstan. Mr. Ordway previously served as U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Armenia from November 2001 until August 2004.

A career Foreign Service Officer since 1975, Mr. Ordway has an extensive background in Soviet and Russian affairs, as well as experience in European security affairs, conflict resolution and peacekeeping operations. He served abroad at the U. S. Embassies in Prague (1978-81) and Moscow (1985-87), and in Brussels at the U. S. Mission to NATO (1993-1995). More recently he was in Moscow from 1996-2001, serving the last two years as Deputy Chief of Mission. While in Moscow, he also was chairman of Anglo-American School Board during the successful construction of a new 1200-student facility. In Washington, Mr. Ordway worked in the State Department's Press Office, the Office of Southern African Affairs, and twice in the Office of Soviet Union Affairs. He served twice as Director of African Affairs for the National Security Council. During this period, he was a member of the U.S. negotiating team that achieved and then helped implement the agreement that led to Cuban withdrawal from Angola and the independence of Namibia. At the NSC, he was deeply involved in the decision-making process in 1992-93 that led to American military participation in efforts to overcome starvation in Somalia. His foreign languages include Russian, French, Italian, Czech and Armenian.

Mr. Ordway was born in California, where he attended public schools and Stanford University. Before graduating with a bachelor’s degree in history in 1972, he studied for nine months in Florence, Italy. He is also a 1975 graduate of the University of California's Hastings College of Law, and did a year of advanced graduate work in Soviet and Eastern European studies at the University of California, Berkeley in 1981-82. He and his wife, Maryjo, have two grown children, Christopher and Julia.

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