Please meet our new Deputy Chief of Mission (DCM), Richard Riley! A DCM is the number-two diplomat assigned to the embassy and is considered the second-in-command after the Ambassador.
To get to know Mr. Riley, we asked him a couple of questions:
Who are you?
I have been privileged to have served for the past 26 years as a United States career diplomat. Serving my country and representing the American people to other nations around the world has been a pleasure for me and my family. Over the course of my career, I’ve had the opportunity to study, work, and live in many countries in Europe, Asia, Africa, and the Caribbean. As a college student in the 1980s, I studied in Paris, which was my first overseas experience. I began my professional diplomatic career several years later, serving for two years in the beautiful Caribbean country of Jamaica. I then spent four years in Europe at our Embassies in Moscow and London from 1988-92. I followed my time in Europe by studying Mandarin Chinese for two years and then spent five years in Taiwan, as Deputy Consul General in Sichuan in western China, and then at our Embassy in Beijing in the early 2000’s. I then took another direction in my career by studying Arabic for two years and serving in multiple positions in the Middle East and South Asia, including two tours of duty in Iraq, Deputy Chief of Mission in Yemen, and most recently as Assistant Chief of Mission at our Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan. I also served as U.S. Consul General for Atlantic Canada, based in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada for three years from 2012-2015. These many diverse work and life experiences have given me a broad perspective on our world, and the issues we all face as a community of nations. The thing I enjoy most, and value most highly, is the ability to work with like-minded friends and allies around the world to find workable, mutually beneficial solutions to solve the problems our world faces.
As for my personal life, I have been happily married for the past 32 years to my wife, Cheryl. We have our wonderful daughter, Eden, who is now 25 years old and is a recent graduate of George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Psychology. We have our family home in San Francisco, California. My wife, daughter, and I share many interests, including our love of animals. We currently have two dogs (a Labrador Retriever and a Lab/Border Collie mix) and two kittens, and share a great interest in working with shelters for homeless animals. We also enjoy outdoor activities, including hiking, camping, and skiing.
What do you most look forward to about living in Norway?
I have been looking forward for the past year to my new assignment in Norway, and I am so pleased to finally be here. Already in my first week in Oslo I have made new friends, seen beautiful and historic places, and have been warmly welcomed. I look forward to exploring everywhere in Oslo, and as soon as my car arrives, I will be venturing out to see all the wonderful places in Norway. You truly have one of the most naturally beautiful countries in the world – and you have been so admirably diligent in preserving the natural heritage of your country. I look forward to many happy days exploring your rivers, forests, and fjords with my Labrador retriever, who I know will enjoy as much as I the great Norwegian outdoors.