Founding Director, James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy at Rice University
Edward Peter Djerejian (born March 6, 1939) is a former United States diplomat who served in eight administrations from John F. Kennedy to Bill Clinton (1962–94.) He served as the United States Ambassador to Syria (1988–91) and Israel (1993–94), Special Assistant to President Ronald Reagan and Deputy Press Secretary of Foreign Affairs (1985-1986), and was Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs (1991-1993.) He is the director of Rice University’s James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy, is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and on the board of trustees of the Carnegie Corporation of New York. Djerejian was independent chairman of Occidental Petroleum Corporation’s board of directors (2013-2015). He is managing partner of Djerejian Global Consultancies, LLP.
Of Armenian descent, Djerejian was born in New York in 1939. He graduated from Georgetown University in 1960 with a Bachelor of Science, as well as an honorary doctorate in humanities from Georgetown and an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Middlebury College. Djerejian served in the US Army as a first lieutenant in the Republic of Korea for the next two years, and then joined the US Foreign Service.
Besides English, he speaks Arabic, Armenian, French and Russian.
He served as special assistant to Under Secretary of State George Ball (1962-64), a political officer in Beirut, Lebanon (1965–69) and in Casablanca, Morocco (1969–72), executive assistant to Under Secretary of State Joseph J. Sisco (1972-1975), consul general in Bordeaux, France (1975–77), officer in the Bureau of European Affairs (1978-79), chief of the US Embassy's political section in Moscow (1979–81), deputy chief of the US Mission to Jordan (1981–84), Special Assistant to President Ronald Reagan and Deputy Press Secretary of Foreign Affairs (1985-1986), Deputy Assistant Secretary of Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs (1986–88), Ambassador to Syria (1989–1991), Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs (1991–93), United States Ambassador to Israel (1993–94), and Director of Rice University’s James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy (August 1994–present).
Djerejian, as Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs in an official speech, coined the description of the purported democratic goals of Islamic radicals as "One man, one vote, one time."
Ambassador Djerejian was asked by Secretary of State Colin Powell to chair the congressionally mandated bipartisan Advisory Group on Public Diplomacy for the Arab and Muslim World which published its report in October 2003. He was Senior Policy Advisor to the congressionally mandated bipartisan Iraq Study Group which published its report in December, 2006. In 2010 he chaired the Baker Institute's workshop that produced the report "Getting to the Territorial Endgame of an Israeli-Palestinian Peace Settlement".
Djerejian is the author of the book Danger and Opportunity: An American Ambassador's Journey Through the Middle East (Simon & Schuster, Threshold Editions, September 2008. Paperback edition, 2009)
Ambassador Djerejian has been awarded the Presidential Distinguished Service Award, the Department of State's Distinguished Honor Award, the President's Meritorious Service Award, the Anti-Defamation League’s Moral Statesman Award, the Ellis Island Medal of Honor, and the Association of Rice Alumni 2009 Gold Medal—the highest honor bestowed by the association in recognition of extraordinary service to the university,. the Award for Humanitarian Diplomacy from Netanya Academic College in Israel, the National Order of the Cedar, bestowed by President Émile Lahoud of Lebanon, and the Order of Ouissam Alaouite, bestowed by King Mohammed VI of Morocco. In 2011, Djerejian was elected a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, one of the nation's oldest and most prestigious honorary societies and independent policy research centers.
He is married to Françoise Andree Liliane Marie (Haelters) Djerejian. They have two children, Gregory Djerejian and Francesca Natalia Djerejian, and two grandchildren, Isabel Djerejian and Sebastian Djerejian.