WASHINGTON – The Atlantic Council has appointed Frederic C. Hof, who most recently served as the State Department’s lead diplomat on Syrian transition issues, as a resident senior fellow in its Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East. 

“Ambassador Hof, a decorated diplomat and soldier, brings to the Council rich experience and expertise on the larger Middle East, most recently, Syria, where he will focus his work,” said Atlantic Council President and CEO Frederick Kempe. “The stakes reach far beyond Syria’s border, and the need for closer transatlantic cooperation is urgent.” 

His appointment serves to further deepen the Council’s work on historic Arab transitions through its fast-growing Hariri Center, which was established in 2012. Before serving as special advisor for transition in Syria, Amb. Hof was special coordinator for regional affairs in the US Department of State’s Office of the Special Envoy for Middle East Peace, where he advised Special Envoy George Mitchell on the full range of Arab-Israeli peace issues. His particular focus was on Syria-Israel and Israel-Lebanon issues.  

Amb. Hof’s professional life has focused largely on the Middle East. He began his career as an Army officer, serving in Vietnam. He also served as US Army attaché in Beirut, Lebanon, and later in the Office of the Secretary of Defense as director for Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, and Palestinian affairs. In 2001, he directed the Jerusalem field operations of the Sharm el-Sheikh Fact-Finding Committee and was the lead drafter of the Committee’s April 30, 2001 Report.

His awards include a Purple Heart, the Department of State Superior Honor Award, the Secretary of Defense Meritorious Civilian Service Medal, and the Defense Superior Service Medal. He is a graduate of the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service and the Naval Postgraduate School. 

The Atlantic Council’s Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East seeks to produce original analysis of the forces transforming the region, as well as policy recommendations for the United States and Europe about how to promote closer and more productive relations with the region. The Hariri Center recognizes the substantial links between political and economic affairs, and develops policy initiatives to promote successful democratic transitions and greater convergence among the Middle East, the United States, and Europe.

To arrange an interview with Amb. Hof, or for more information, please contact us at [email protected].