US: Obama nominates openly gay diplomat as Ambassador to Vietnam
US President Barack Obama has nominated Ted Osius as the next ambassador to Vietnam. Osius would replace current ambassador David Shear who has held the position since 2011.
If confirmed, Osius who is gay and married to state department officer Clayton Bond, would be the sixth openly gay ambassador in the US stable.
Osius is a career member of the Foreign Service, and an associate professor at the National War College.. He was a senior Fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies from 2012 to 2013.
His previous overseas posts include serving as deputy chief of mission at the US. Embassy in Jakarta from 2009 to 2012. Before that, he was political minister-counselor at the US. Embassy in New Delhi, from 2006 to 2009.
Osius also served as deputy director of the Office of Korean Affairs in the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs at the Department of State from 2004 to 2006.
Gay & Lesbian Victory Institute President and CEO Chuck Wolfe whose organisation works to achieve full equality for LGBTI people, applauded Obama’s nomination of Osius.
“I commend the Administration for this nomination of a qualified career member of the Foreign Service. If confirmed, Osius would make an excellent addition to the growing number of openly LGBT U.S. Ambassadors. He will bring a unique prospective to the ambassadorship along with decades worth of knowledge and experience.”
Other LGBT ambassadors nominated by Obama, are Daniel Baer (OSCE), John Berry (Australia) James Costos (Spain) Rufus Gifford (Denmark), and Wally Brewster (Dominican Republic). Prior to Obama taking office, only two ambassadors had ever been openly gay.