Ambassador Joseph Huggins

Ambassador Joseph Huggins

Ambassador Joseph Huggins

Ambassador Joseph Huggins, a retired Career Diplomat, is a leader with proven skills in Strategic Planning/International Government Relations/Negotiations/Conflict Resolution/Business Development/Organizing International Conferences/Advocacy/Media Relations and Public Speaking.

Ambassador Huggins honed these skills through his work in high-intensity/high-profile diplomatic assignments throughout Europe/Africa/South Asia/the Middle East, and Washington.

After retiring from U.S. Government service in 2006, he established the Consulting firm, The Huggins Group, LLC (THG). The firm provides Strategic Advice and Intelligence Research to U.S. companies interested in trade and investment opportunities in Africa and the Middle East. Huggins knows how to bring disparate forces together to successfully close transactions. He has worked with large, small and medium enterprises on various transactions, from commodity purchases to financing. He also serves as Senior Advisor to Rucker Capital Advisors LLC, a Private Merchant Bank, on financial issues related to Africa.

Prior to forming THG, Ambassador Huggins had a long and distinguished Diplomatic career serving in mid-level and senior positions in the former Soviet Union, Kenya, Guinea, Togo, and Jordan. In Washington, he worked on issues related to Africa, South Asia, and the Middle East. In his last overseas assignment, from November 2002 to July 2005, he served as Ambassador to the Republic of Botswana and the Secretary of State's Special Representative to the Southern Africa Development Community, a political and economic organization comprised of 14 countries in southern Africa. During his tour in Botswana, Ambassador Huggins was responsible for strengthening U.S.-Botswana relations and promoting trade and investment opportunities for U.S. firms. Following his assignment to Botswana, Ambassador Huggins was seconded to the Corporate Council on Africa as Senior Advisor to the Financing and Capital Flows Committee in developing strategies to increase investment flows to Africa. He also served as a liaison between the Council and multilateral organizations, African governments and the broader business community on issues related specifically to finance and capital flows.

Ambassador Huggins previously served as Executive Director for the U.S. State Department's Bureau of African Affairs, where he worked closely with the Assistant Secretary of State for Africa in formulating policy and resource requirements for 48 U.S. Embassies in Africa. In 2009, he served on President-elect Obama's Transition Team, reviewing National Security issues at the U.S. Department of State and providing input to Secretary of State-designate Hillary Rodham Clinton's Senate confirmation hearing.

Ambassador Huggins is a firm believer in the maxim that "A company can do well (profit) and do good (corporate social responsibility)." In this regard, he is a founding Board member and President of the Ballou Knights4Life Scholarship Foundation, which provides college scholarships to underserved students of Frank W. Ballou High School, his alma mater. He is also a founding Board member of Airborne Lifeline Foundation. He Chaired the Board of Directors of the non-governmental organization Ariel Foundation International from 2005 before resigning in February 2021. Ambassador Huggins previously served on the U.S. Trade Representative's (USTR) Trade Advisory Committee on Africa (TACA), as well as two terms on the Sub-Saharan Africa Advisory Committee for the Export-Import Bank of the United States. The Committee, established by an act of Congress, provides expert guidance to the Bank in developing policies to strengthen Bank support of U.S. exports to Africa.

He has been featured in the documentary film, Africa Investment Horizons; Fox 5 New York News broadcast on Botswana; Reuters Africa Journal Broadcast; Al-Jazeera's English language service broadcast on foundations supporting HIV/AIDS programs in Africa; Cleveland, Ohio's National Public Radio - WCPN 90.3 - broadcast, Africa, Land of the 144 Percent Investment Return; MHZ Network's African World; and featured in articles in Time, Newsweek, and Black Enterprise Magazine.