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African Americans in the Foreign Service

Notable firsts:

  • Ebenezer Don Carlos Bassett was the first African-American diplomat.
  • Clifton R. Wharton was the first African American to join the Foreign Service. He was also the first African American appointed as chief of a diplomatic mission to a European country.
  • Edward R. Dudley was the first African American to hold the rank of Ambassador.
  • Patricia Roberts Harris was the first African American woman to hold the rank of Ambassador.