National Defense University

Educating, Developing and Inspiring National Security Leaders

Ambassador Wanda L. Nesbitt

Interim President

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Ambassador Wanda Nesbitt, Senior Vice President, NDU.

Ambassador Wanda Nesbitt, Senior Vice President, NDU. (Photo by NDU AV)


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Ambassador Nesbitt began serving as NDU's Interim President in July 2014. She is a career member of the U.S. Foreign Service and holds the rank of Career Minister. She joined the National Defense University as the Senior Vice President in November 2013.

Prior to NDU, Ms. Nesbitt served as U.S Ambassador to the Republic of Namibia from November 2010 to October 2013, where she was well known for her commitment to environmental and wildlife conservation.

From October 2007 to August 2010, she was the U.S. Ambassador to Côte d’Ivoire, and was deeply involved in efforts to promote democratic governance.

In Washington, Ms. Nesbitt served most recently (2005–2007) as the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for the Bureau of Consular Affairs. She is a consular cone officer with a vast array of experience with policy and management issues. She was also Director of the Senior Level Division in the Bureau of Human Resources’ Career Development and Assignments Division (2004-2005), where she handled assignment issues for the Department’s most senior career officers; her division was the Executive Secretariat for the Chief of Mission and Deputy Chief of Mission/Principal officer selection committees.

As U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Madagascar (2002–2004), Ms. Nesbitt devoted particular attention to resolving a political crisis while also promoting environmental preservation and protection, and increased private sector involvement to address poverty reduction.

Ms. Nesbitt has twice served as a Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Embassies in Rwanda (1997–1999) and Tanzania. She was Chargé d’Affaires in Tanzania from January to November 2001.

Ms. Nesbitt joined the Foreign Service in 1981 and is the recipient of numerous awards, including two Presidential awards for outstanding performance. She is 1997 graduate of the National War College and holds bachelor’s degrees from the University of Pennsylvania in International Relations and French.

She is married to Mr. James Stejskal, a decorated Special Forces veteran and military historian.