Diplomats

A person, who serves as a representative or an ambassador on behalf of the government of a particular country, may be referred to as a diplomat. A diplomat plays a crucial and significant role in maintaining healthy relations with other countries and their respective governments. Thus, a diplomat is a specifically skilled and trained person who has the skills and uses tact in dealing with sensitive and important matters that affects the political concerns of the world. Appointed by the government, a diplomat may be required to conduct and diplomatic talks with other countries and even many of the established international organizations. A diplomat is responsible for maintain peaceful and friendly relations with other countries, he may be required to represent the interests of his nation and promote his nation in a positive light to the world. They work in collaboration with the foreign ministers of a nation and play a role in the foreign policy formulation. A diplomat is thus one of the most significant representatives of a country and advocate and negotiate foreign policy related issues. Dig out more about some of most famous diplomats around the world, with their biographies that include trivia, interesting facts, timeline and life history.
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 1 Shirley Temple

Shirley Temple
7
Famous As: Actress, 27th United States Ambassador to Czechoslovakia
Birthdate: April 23, 1928
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Santa Monica, California, United States
Died: February 10, 2014

After starting her film career at the age of three, Shirley Temple went on to become Hollywood's highest-grossing child actress from 1935 to 1938. She is the epitome of popular child stars who lose their charm as they grow up. Despite failing as an adult actress, she is ranked 18th in the greatest female screen legends of Classic Hollywood list.

 2 Niccolò Machiavelli

Niccolò Machiavelli
4
Famous As: Diplomat
Birthdate: May 3, 1469
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Florence, Italy
Died: June 22, 1527
Italian Renaissance philosopher, diplomat, and author Niccolò Machiavelli is remembered for his work The Prince. He believed that the end or the intention behind any action justifies the action. He gave rise to the term Machiavellianism, which signifies the use of deceit and treachery to achieve one’s goals. 

 3 T. E. Lawrence

T. E. Lawrence
5
Famous As: Archaeologist, Army officer, Diplomat
Birthdate: August 16, 1888
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Tremadoc, Wales
Died: May 19, 1935
T. E. Lawrence was a British army officer who participated in the Arab Revolt, against the Ottoman regime, during World War I. Nicknamed Lawrence of Arabia, he inspired a movie of the same name. His treatise of his war experiences was published as Seven Pillars of Wisdom, his best-known work.
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 4 Madeleine Albright

Madeleine Albright
5
Famous As: Ist Female U.S. Secretary of State
Birthdate: November 28, 1937
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Smíchov, Prague, Czechia
Died: March 23, 2022
Madeleine Albright served as the U.S. Secretary of State from 1997 to 2001, under Bill Clinton, and was the first woman to hold the post. The Presidential Medal of Freedom awardee also chaired the Albright Stonebridge Group and taught at Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service.
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 5 Eleanor Roosevelt

Eleanor Roosevelt
6
Famous As: Longest-Serving First Lady of The United States
Birthdate: October 11, 1884
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: New York City, New York, United States
Died: November 7, 1962

Feminist and civil rights icon Eleanor Roosevelt, wife of President Franklin D. Roosevelt, was the longest-serving U.S First Lady. She was a prominent human rights activist, wrote columns, and hosted a radio show. She was named to Gallup's List of Most Widely Admired People of the 20th Century in 1999.

 6 Kofi Annan

Kofi Annan
4
Famous As: Former UN Secretary General
Birthdate: April 8, 1938
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Kumasi, Ghana
Died: August 18, 2018

Ghanaian diplomat Kofi Annan served as the seventh Secretary-General of the United Nations from 1997 to 2006. He was the founder and chairman of the Kofi Annan Foundation and a co-recipient of the 2001 Nobel Peace Prize. During his stint with the UN, he launched the UN Global Compact and worked to combat HIV/AIDS. 

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 7 Robert Todd Lincoln

Robert Todd Lincoln
5
Famous As: Politician, Son of Abraham Lincoln
Birthdate: August 1, 1843
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Springfield, Illinois, United States
Died: July 25, 1926

Lawyer Robert Todd Lincoln, son of Abraham Lincoln, served as the U.S. Secretary of War from 1881 to 1885 and as the U.S. minister to the U.K. from 1889 to 1893. He had served in the Civil War, too, and had also been the president of the Pullman Car Company

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 8 António Guterres

António Guterres
4
Famous As: 9th Secretary-General of the United Nations
Birthdate: April 30, 1949
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Lisbon

António Guterres is a Portuguese diplomat and politician who served as Portugal's prime minister from 1995 to 2002. A favorite among the masses, Guterres was ranked the best prime minister of Portugal over the last 30 years in polls conducted in 2012 and 2014. In 2009, he was named in Forbes magazine's list of world's most powerful people

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 9 John Jay

John Jay
4
Famous As: 1st Chief Justice of the United States (1789-1795)
Birthdate: December 12, 1745
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States
Died: May 17, 1829

One of the Founding Fathers of the United States who signed the famous Paris Treaty, John Jay was best known as the first Chief Justice of the US Supreme Court, although he occupied various other important public positions. He was a diplomat, who shaped his country’s foreign policy. He passed legislation to gradually abolish slavery, but he himself owned five enslaved people.

 10 Zbigniew Brzezinski

Zbigniew Brzezinski
4
Famous As: United States National Security Advisor (1977-81)
Birthdate: March 28, 1928
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Warsaw, Poland
Died: May 26, 2017
Polish-American diplomat Zbigniew Brzezinski had been a counselor to President Lyndon B. Johnson and the National Security Advisor to President Jimmy Carter. He believed in the realist school of international relations. He also taught foreign policy and was seen in programs such as The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer.
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 11 Dag Hammarskjöld

Dag Hammarskjöld
4
Famous As: Secretary-General of the United Nations (1953-61)
Birthdate: July 29, 1905
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Jönköping, Sweden
Died: September 18, 1961

Dag Hammarskjöld was a Swedish diplomat and economist. In 1953, Hammarskjöld became the youngest person to be appointed as the Secretary-General of the United Nations. He died in airplane crash in 1961. Dag Hammarskjöld became the first person to be honored with a Nobel Peace Prize posthumously.

 12 Kurt Waldheim

Kurt Waldheim
4
Famous As: Secretary-General of the United Nations (1972-81)
Birthdate: December 21, 1918
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Sankt Andrä-Wördern, Austria
Died: June 14, 2007

While he claimed he studied at the University of Vienna during World War II, documents recovered later suggested that Kurt Waldheim was in fact part of the German army in the Balkans. Waldheim later became the president of Austria and the secretary-general of the United Nations.

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 13 Nikki Haley

Nikki Haley
4
Famous As: 29th United States Ambassador to the United Nations (2017-2018)
Birthdate: January 20, 1972
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Bamberg, South Carolina, United States

Born to Indian immigrant parents, Nikki Haley went on to become the first Indian-American to hold an office in South Carolina and later became its governor—the first woman and second Indian American to be appointed governor in the US. A published author, she has also served as the US ambassador to the United Nations.

 14 Colin Powell

Colin Powell
4
Famous As: 65th United States Secretary of State
Birthdate: April 5, 1937
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Harlem, New York, United States
Died: October 18, 2021

A veteran politician who served as the 65th United States Secretary of State, Colin Powell was the first African-American Secretary of State. A member of the Republican Party, he was an army man prior to entering politics. He was a  four-star general at the time of his retirement. After leaving politics, he pursued a career as a public speaker.

 15 James Madison

James Madison
4
Famous As: 4th President of The United States
Birthdate: March 16, 1751
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Port Conway, Virginia, United States
Died: June 28, 1836

James Madison played an important role in drafting the US Constitution and the US Bill of Rights and is hailed as the Father of the Constitution. He also co-wrote The Federalist Papers, considered to be a seminal work of political science. As president, he led the country into the 1812 war and historians place him as an above-average president.

 16 Henry Kissinger

Henry Kissinger
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Famous As: 56th United States Secretary of State (1973-77)
Birthdate: May 27, 1923
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Fürth, Germany

Henry Kissinger's heart-warming story of a Jewish who fled Nazi Germany in 1938 to become an influential politician in the USA is truly inspirational. As a National Security Advisor and US Secretary of State, Henry played a key role in the US foreign policy from 1969 to 1977. Henry Kissinger is also criticized by some as an alleged war criminal.

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 17 Condoleezza Rice

Condoleezza Rice
4
Famous As: 66th United States Secretary of State (2005-09)
Birthdate: November 14, 1954
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Birmingham, Alabama, United States

The 66th United States Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice made history in 2005 when she became the first female black Secretary of State. She is also the first female to serve as National Security Advisor, a position which she served from 2001 to 2005. One of the most powerful women in the world at one point of time, she has been depicted in Hollywood films.

 18 Gottfried W. Leibniz

Gottfried W. Leibniz
4
Famous As: Polymath, Mathematician
Birthdate: July 1, 1646
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Leipzig, Germany
Died: November 14, 1716
Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz was a significant logician, mathematician, and philosopher of the Enlightenment era. He laid down his own concepts of differential and integral calculus. He was behind the invention of the mass-produced mechanical calculator and modified the binary number system. He also laid down a separate library cataloging system.
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 19 U Thant

U Thant
4
Famous As: 3rd Secretary General of the U.N. (1961-71)
Birthdate: January 22, 1909
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Pantanaw, Myanmar (Burma)
Died: November 25, 1974

Burmese diplomat U Thant made history by becoming the first non-Scandinavian to be named the UN secretary-general. Later in life, he tried applying Buddhist principles such as detachment to solve major international conflicts. Following his death in New York, his burial in Burma became a source of riots.

 20 Gary Hart

Gary Hart
4
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: November 28, 1936
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Ottawa, Kansas, United States
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 21 Vyacheslav Molotov

Vyacheslav Molotov
4
Famous As: Chairman of the Council of People's Commissars of the Soviet Union (1930-41)
Birthdate: March 9, 1890
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Sovetsk, Russia
Died: November 8, 1986

Vyacheslav Molotov was a Soviet diplomat and politician. An Old Bolshevik, Molotov played a key role in bringing the Bolsheviks to power. He also played a major role during the Great Purge, signing 373 execution lists. Molotov was portrayed by actor Michael Palin in the 2017 political satire black comedy film The Death of Stalin.

 22 Gertrude Bell

Gertrude Bell
5
Famous As: Writer, Diplomat
Birthdate: July 14, 1868
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Washington, United Kingdom
Died: July 12, 1926

Born into a wealthy English family, Gertrude Bell was an explorer at heart and went down in history for her journeys across the Middle East and for helping establish the Hāshimite dynasty in Iraq. Though she graduated in history from Oxford, being a woman, she wasn’t awarded a degree.

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 23 Rory Stewart

Rory Stewart
4
Famous As: Political Leader
Birthdate: January 3, 1973
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: British Hong Kong

The son of a soldier and intelligence officer, Rory Stewart was educated at Eton and Oxford and was also a tutor to princes William and Harry. Apart from being a diplomat and MP later, he also traveled across several countries on foot and wrote about this remarkable journey in a bestselling book.

 24 Zheng He

Zheng He
5
Famous As: Explorer
Birthdate: September 23, 1371
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Yunnan
Died: 1433 AD
Chinese explorer Zheng He was also Chinese Ming dynasty eunuch. He was born Ma He, a Muslim, and was named Zheng by the Yongle Emperor, whom he helped to depose the Jianwen Emperor. He became the commander of Nanjing and led expeditions to places such as Southeast Asia and India.
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 25 James Baker

James Baker
4
Famous As: Former US Secretary of State
Birthdate: April 28, 1930
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Houston, Texas, United States
Attorney James Baker was made the White House chief of staff and then the secretary of the treasury by President Ronald Reagan. He managed George H. W. Bush’s 1988 presidential campaign and became the White House chief of staff under him, witnessing the Gulf War and the Cold War.

 26 Chiune Sugihara

Chiune Sugihara
4
Famous As: Diplomat
Birthdate: January 1, 1900
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Kozuchi Town (now Mino, Gifu Prefecture), Japan
Died: July 31, 1986

Chiune Sugihara was a Japanese diplomat best remembered for helping thousands of Jews flee Europe during the Second World War. He did so by issuing transit visas to the Jews, enabling them to travel through Japanese territory. Sugihara helped the Jews despite knowing that he was risking the lives of his family and his job. 

 27 Washington Irving

Washington Irving
4
Famous As: Author, Historian, Diplomat
Birthdate: April 3, 1783
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: New York City, New York
Died: November 28, 1859

Widely known as the first American man of letters, Washington Irving penned the legendary tales of Rip Van Winkle and The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, which are also called the first short stories by an American author. He had also had a brief stint as a lawyer.

 28 Sergey Lavrov

Sergey Lavrov
4
Famous As: Minister of Foreign Affairs of Russia (Since 2004)
Birthdate: March 21, 1950
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia

Sergey Lavrov is a Russian diplomat and politician. Since 2004, he has been serving as the foreign minister of Russia. An alumnus of the Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO), he began his diplomatic career in 1972. Considered a brilliant diplomat, he was later appointed to the post of minister of foreign affairs. He is multi-lingual. 

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 29 Fridtjof Nansen

Fridtjof Nansen
5
Famous As: Explorer, Polymath
Birthdate: October 10, 1861
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Oslo, Norway
Died: May 13, 1930

Fridtjof Nansen was a Norwegian polymath who won the prestigious Nobel Peace Prize in 1922 for his post-war efforts after the First World War. A well-known explorer, humanitarian, and diplomat, Nansen achieved international fame for his attempt to reach the geographical North Pole during his Fram expedition. His techniques and innovations influenced a generation of succeeding Antarctic and Arctic expeditions.

 30 Kevin Rudd

Kevin Rudd
5
Famous As: 26th Prime Minister of Australia
Birthdate: September 21, 1957
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Nambour, Queensland, Australia

Former Australian prime minister Kevin Rudd has been an Australian Labor Party leader and his country’s foreign affairs minister, too. After graduating in Chinese studies, he directly stepped into a diplomatic career. He has also worked for KPMG Australia as a Senior China Consultant and has penned a memoir.

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 31 George F. Kennan

George F. Kennan
4
Famous As: Diplomat
Birthdate: February 16, 1904
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Milwaukee, Wisconsin, United States
Died: March 17, 2005

 32 Warren Christopher

Warren Christopher
4
Famous As: Lawyer
Birthdate: October 27, 1925
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Scranton, North Dakota, United States
Died: March 18, 2011
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 33 Valerie Jarrett

Valerie Jarrett
4
Famous As: Lawyer
Birthdate: November 14, 1956
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Shiraz
Valerie Jarrett served as the senior advisor to former president Barack Obama and the director of the Office of Public Engagement and Intergovernmental Affairs from 2009 to 2017. She had previously served Mayor Richard Daley as his deputy chief of staff and had hired Michelle Obama, then-fiancée of Obama.

 34 Raoul Wallenberg

Raoul Wallenberg
4
Famous As: Humanitarian
Birthdate: August 4, 1912
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Lidingö, Sweden
Died: January 17, 1945

Swedish architect Raoul Wallenberg went down in history as a savior for Jews during the Nazi regime. He not only issued provisional Swedish passports, or Schutzpass, to protect Jews, but also set up safe houses for them. He disappeared amid mysterious circumstances. Many believe he died in a Soviet prison.

 35 Shashi Tharoor

Shashi Tharoor
6
Famous As: Writer, Politician, Diplomat
Birthdate: March 9, 1956
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: London

Born in London, to an Indian couple, Shashi Tharoor is known for his award-winning books such as the The Great Indian Novel and his over-the-top English vocabulary. Tharoor is also a Congress MP. He made headlines when his wife Sunanda Pushkar was found dead in a luxury hotel.

 36 Klemens von Metternich

Klemens von Metternich
4
Famous As: Chancellor of the Austrian Empire (1821-48)
Birthdate: May 15, 1773
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Koblenz, Germany
Died: June 11, 1859
After being appointed the Austrian ambassador to France, Klemens von Metternich met Napoleon many times and apparently had a brief affair with Napoleon’s sister, Caroline, too. He duped Napoleon into thinking he supported France against Russia, and secretly made an alliance with Russia, Prussia, and Britain, to eventually overthrow Napoleon.

 37 John Gavin

John Gavin
4
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: April 8, 1931
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, United States
Died: February 9, 2018

 38 Sérgio Vieira de Mello

Sérgio Vieira de Mello
4
Famous As: Diplomat
Birthdate: March 15, 1948
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Rio de Janeiro
Died: August 19, 2003

 39 J. Christopher Stevens

J. Christopher Stevens
4
Famous As: Diplomat
Birthdate: April 1, 1960
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Grass Valley, California, United States
Died: September 11, 2012

 40 Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala
4
Famous As: 7th Director-General of the World Trade Organization
Birthdate: June 13, 1954
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Ogwashi Ukwu, Nigeria

 41 Folke Bernadotte

Folke Bernadotte
3
Famous As: Diplomat
Birthdate: January 2, 1895
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Stockholm, Sweden
Died: September 17, 1948

 42 Andrew Young Jr.

Andrew Young Jr.
4
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: March 12, 1932
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: New Orleans, Louisiana, United States

Andrew Young Jr. is an American activist, politician, and diplomat. Young is best known for his role in the civil rights movement; a close associate of Martin Luther King Jr., Andrew Young served as the executive director of a civil rights organization called Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC). Andrew Young is a recipient of the prestigious Presidential Medal of Freedom.

 43 Dan Coats

Dan Coats
4
Famous As: Politician, Diplomat
Birthdate: May 16, 1943
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Jackson, Michigan, United States

 44 Caroline Kennedy

Caroline Kennedy
0
Famous As: Author
Birthdate: November 27, 1957
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Cornell Medical Center Hospital, New York City, New York, U.S.

Caroline Kennedy is an American author, diplomat, and attorney. The only surviving child of John F. Kennedy and Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy, Caroline served as the US Ambassador to Japan between 2013 and 2017. A prolific author who writes about civil liberties, Caroline Kennedy has also served as a spokesperson for the Kennedy family's legacy.

 45 John Eisenhower

John Eisenhower
4
Famous As: Diplomat, Military historian, Author, Writer, Biographer
Birthdate: August 3, 1922
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Denver
Died: December 21, 2013

U.S. Army officer John Eisenhower was the son of military-general-turned-president Dwight D. Eisenhower. He had donned many hats, from teaching English to serving on his father's White House staff. He also assisted his father in writing his memoirs and had been the American ambassador to Belgium, too.

 46 Richard Francis Burton

Richard Francis Burton
4
Famous As: Translator
Birthdate: March 19, 1821
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Torquay
Died: October 20, 1890

Richard Francis Burton was a British explorer, soldier, and scholar. He is best remembered for his explorations in Africa, Asia, and the Americas. Along with John Hanning Speke, Burton was the first European to witness the Great Lakes of Africa. A prolific writer, Burton wrote several scholarly articles about numerous subjects like sexual practices, falconry, human behavior, travel, and ethnography.

 47 Lawrence Durrell

Lawrence Durrell
4
Famous As: Novelist
Birthdate: February 27, 1912
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Jalandhar
Died: November 7, 1990
Lawrence Durrell, eldest brother of naturalist and author Gerald Durrell, was a poet and writer whose best-known work is The Alexandria Quartet, the tetralogy of novels, including the famous book Justine. Constance from The Avignon Quintet earned a Booker Prize nomination. He is also known for his extensive travel writing.

 48 Jon Huntsman Jr.

Jon Huntsman Jr.
4
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: March 26, 1960
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Redwood City, California, U.S.

 49 George J. Mitchell

George J. Mitchell
4
Famous As: United States Special Envoy for Middle East Peace (2009-2011)
Birthdate: August 20, 1933
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Waterville, Maine, United States

 50 Roger Casement

Roger Casement
4
Famous As: Diplomat
Birthdate: September 1, 1864
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Sandycove, Ireland
Died: August 3, 1916

Roger Casement was an Irish nationalist and diplomat. Also a well-known humanitarian activist, Casement is remembered for the Casement Report, a 1904 document in which he wrote about the abuses in the Congo Free State. His investigations of human rights abuses earned him a knighthood in 1911. However, Casement was stripped of his knighthood after being charged with high treason.