Deputy Chief of Mission Jonathan Lee Yoo has served as Chargé d’Affaires at Embassy Apia since June 2020, on behalf of the U.S. Ambassador to the Independent State of Samoa, resident in Wellington. As Chargé d’Affaires, he maintains oversight of all U.S. government programs in Samoa. Prior to assuming this position, Jon served in the State Department’s Executive Secretariat. A career Foreign Service Officer since 2006, Jon’s earlier assignments include Principal Officer in Busan and Deputy Political Unit Chief in Tokyo, as well as postings at embassies and consulates in Seoul, Vladivostok, Shenyang, and Baghdad.
Jon and his teams have received several awards from the State Department, including the Distinguished Honor Award, the Superior Honor Award, and the Meritorious Honor Award.
Born in Iowa City, Iowa, Jon grew up in Seattle, Washington before attending Northwestern University, where he earned a B.A. in History and Slavic Studies, graduated Summa Cum Laude, and was elected Phi Beta Kappa. Jon also studied at UCLA, the University of Washington, and Kazakh Ablai Khan University of International Relations and World Languages. He speaks Russian, Korean, and Japanese. He is married to Jihyun Bae. They have three children, one of whom was born at Tupua Tamasese Mea’ole Hospital in Moto’otua.
NOTE: U.S. Ambassador to the Independent State of Samoa, Scott P. Brown, departed Wellington on December 20th, 2020.