Assistant Chief of Mission Richard Riley

Term of Appointment: July 2017  to present

Richard H. Riley is a member of the U.S. Senior Foreign Service (SFS) and has served as a U.S. Diplomat for 25 years.  He became the Assistant Chief of Mission for U.S. Embassy Kabul in July 2017.

Richard served most recently as the Deputy Chief of Mission for U.S. Embassy Sana’a, Yemen from August 2015 to June 2017.  Prior to his service in Yemen, Richard was Principal Officer/Consul General at the U.S. Consulate General in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada from 2012-2015.  From 2011-2012, he served as the Senior Civilian Representative (SCR) for the U.S. Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) in Nangarhar province, Afghanistan, where he led an interagency, multi-national team of 32 officers and local staff in implementing governance, rule of law, and economic development strategies to build the capacity of the Afghan Government.  From 2009-2010, Richard was the Deputy Director of the Office of Egypt & Levant Affairs at the U.S. Department of State, guiding U.S. foreign policy in Egypt, Jordan, Syria, and Lebanon. He attended the National War College at Ft. McNair in Washington D.C. from 2008-2009, graduating as a Distinguished Graduate.  From 2006 to 2008, Richard served two tours of duty in Iraq, first as the leader of the Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) in Dhi Qar province, Iraq (2006-2007), and then as Senior Coordinator for Democracy & Human Rights at Embassy Baghdad (2007-2008). Richard also served two tours of duty in the People’s Republic of China, first as Deputy Consul General in Chengdu, Sichuan (1994-1995) and then as Senior Human Resources Officer for the China Mission at Embassy Beijing (2001-2004).

Earlier in his career, Richard served in London (1990-1992), Moscow (1988-1990), and Kingston, Jamaica (1986-1988). He also helped establish and lead two new U.S. Embassies following the fall of the Former Soviet Union in 1991. He was Charge d’Affaires at U.S. Embassy Tallinn, Estonia in the fall of 1991, and led the team that established the new U.S. Embassy in Alma Ata, Kazakhstan in 1992.

Richard has previous private sector experience, working for four years as a Strategy Consultant for Boston Consulting Group (BCG) in Hong Kong and PricewaterhouseCoopers in San Francisco. He holds an MBA from Harvard Business School, an MS in International Security Strategy from National Defense University, and a BBA from the University of Georgia, Athens.

Richard has studied Mandarin Chinese, Arabic, Russian, and Pashto during his career.  He is the recipient of multiple Department awards, including several Superior Honor awards, Meritorious Honor awards, and the Matilda Sinclair Award for Hard Language study.​