Roberta Jacobson, a longtime diplomat who heads the U.S. side in the talks on restoring relations with Cuba, will be named by President Obama to serve as ambassador to Mexico, the Los Angeles Times is reporting.
“A 30-year veteran of the State Department, Jacobson has spent the last three years as assistant secretary for Western Hemisphere Affairs. In January, she became the highest-ranking U.S. official in three decades to attend formal negotiations in Cuba. The talks have become Obama’s most important initiative in Latin America at a time when the U.S. has given the region relatively little high-level attention because of its focus on the Middle East and Asia,” reported Christi Parsons for the LA Times.
In the past Jacobson has served as deputy assistant secretary for Canada, Mexico and NAFTA issues. She also served as deputy chief of mission at the U.S. Embassy in Lima, Peru. From 2010 to 2012, Jacobson was the principal deputy assistant secretary for Western Hemisphere Affairs.
She will now be charged with Mexico during a critical period in its relationship with the U.S. Both countries are currently concerned with trade and border security issues. Also paramount are their efforts to dismantle the powerful and violent drug cartels there.
Jacobson is a graduate of Brown University and earned a master’s from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University outside Boston.