Thomas A. Shannon
US Ambassador to Brazil
Thomas A. Shannon, Jr. was confirmed on December 24, 2009 as U.S. Ambassador to Brazil. Prior to this assignment he served as Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs from November 2005 – November 2009. He is a career member of the Senior Foreign Service, and holds the personal rank of Career Ambassador.
Ambassador Shannon served as Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for Western Hemisphere Affairs at the National Security Council from 2003 to 2005. From 2002 to 2003, he was Deputy Assistant Secretary of Western Hemisphere Affairs at the Department of State, where he was Director of Andean Affairs from 2001 to 2002. He was also U.S. Deputy Permanent Representative to the Organization of American States (OAS) from 2000 to 2001. He served as Director for Inter-American Affairs at the National Security Council from 1999 to 2000; as Political Counselor at the U.S. Embassy in Caracas, Venezuela from 1996 to 1999; and as Regional Labor Attaché at the U.S. Consulate General in Johannesburg, South Africa from 1992 to 1996.
During his career as a Foreign Service Officer, Ambassador Shannon also served as Special Assistant to the Ambassador at the U.S. Embassy in Brasilia, Brazil from 1989 to 1992; as Country Officer for Cameroon, Gabon, and Sao Tome and Principe from 1987 to 1989; and as the Consular/Political Rotational Officer at the U.S. Embassy in Guatemala City, Guatemala from 1984 to 1986.
Ambassador Shannon graduated from the College of William and Mary in 1980, having studied government and philosophy. He is a member of Phi Beta Kappa. He then studied at Oxford University, where he received a M.Phil in Politics in 1982, and a D.Phil. in Politics in 1983.
Ambassador Shannon is married to Maria Guisela Letona of Guatemala. They have two sons, Thomas and John.