27 June 2013
Kenneth J. Fairfax, a career diplomat in the US State Department currently serving as US Ambassador to Kazakhstan, has been designated for the post of Deputy Executive Director of the International Energy Agency. Mr. Fairfax will take up his full duties at the end of September 2013. He will succeed Richard H. Jones, another former US career diplomat who has served as Deputy Executive Director since 1 October 2008.
“We look forward to welcoming Kenneth Fairfax to the IEA,” said Executive Director Maria van der Hoeven. “His far-reaching international experience and expertise will be essential in supporting the Agency’s efforts to forge closer relationships with countries beyond the current IEA membership.”
In a career that spanned over 25 years at the US Department of State, Mr. Fairfax has held economic, management and consular positions in Iraq, Vietnam, Poland, Ukraine, Canada, the Russian Federation, Korea and Oman. He also served as Director of Nuclear Materials Security at the US National Security Council, reporting to the US President on interagency co-ordination and implementation of policies to reduce the risk of illegal trafficking of nuclear materials and equipment. His experience in the energy field includes promoting US business in the hydrocarbon sector in Kazakhstan, supporting Iraqi leaders in efforts to increase oil production and exports by over 100 percent, working on the modernisation of the energy sector in Ukraine and acting as Science, Technology and Environment Officer at the US Embassy in Moscow.
“Mr. Fairfax brings the right skills to a challenging position. In addition to his impressive diplomatic and economic background, he has managed large teams in international settings. I have no doubt the IEA will benefit greatly from his contribution,” stated Ms Van der Hoeven.
Mr. Fairfax has a BA in Government with High Honours from Oberlin College. He will be joined in Paris by his wife, Nyetta Yarkin.
Ms. Van der Hoeven also commended outgoing Deputy Executive Director Richard Jones for five years of dedicated service to the IEA. "We wish him well in his new endeavours," she added.
About the IEA
The International Energy Agency is an autonomous organisation which works to ensure reliable, affordable and clean energy for its 28 member countries and beyond. Founded in response to the 1973/4 oil crisis, the IEA’s initial role was to help countries co-ordinate a collective response to major disruptions in oil supply through the release of emergency oil stocks to the markets. While this continues to be a key aspect of its work, the IEA has evolved and expanded. It is at the heart of global dialogue on energy, providing reliable and unbiased research, statistics, analysis and recommendations.
Photo by United States Department of State