James D. Melville Jr., a career member of the Senior Foreign Service, class of Minister-Counselor was nominated by President Obama as the next U.S. Ambassador to Estonia on May 7, 2015, and confirmed by the Senate on August 5, 2015. He presented his credentials to President Ilves on December 8, 2015.
Ambassador Melville’s most recent position with the State Department was as the Deputy Chief of Mission in the U.S. Embassy Berlin, Germany. From 2010 to 2012, he served as Executive Director of the Bureaus of European and Eurasian Affairs and International Organization Affairs. As Executive Director of EUR and IO, Ambassador Melville directed support for all of EUR and IO’s 79 overseas posts, as well as the domestic requirements for both bureaus.
Prior to that assignment, he served as Minister-Counselor for Management Affairs at Embassy London from 2008 to 2010 and at Embassy Moscow from 2005 to 2008. In Moscow, London and particularly in Berlin, Ambassador Melville frequently served as Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Ambassador Melville’s first Foreign Service assignment was in the U.S. Embassy to the German Democratic Republic from 1986-1988. He has also served in Seychelles, St. Petersburg, at the U.S. Mission to NATO, and in Paris. In Washington, he has worked in Legislative Affairs, as a Senior Watch Officer in the Operations Center, and at the Foreign Service Board of Examiners.
Mr. Melville speaks Russian, German, and French. He graduated from Boston University with an honors degree in history, has a J.D. from Rutgers University School of Law, and is a member of the bars of New Jersey and New York. He is originally from Bradley Beach, New Jersey and is married to Joanna Melville.