AAI Remembers Distinguished Diplomat and Former AAI President Donald Easum


Malawi President Dr. Hastings Banda with U.S. ambassadors Robert Stevenson and Don Easum in 1974.

Ambassador Donald Boyd Easum, former President of The Africa-America Institute and retired U.S. ambassador passed away on April 16 in Summit, NJ.

Ambassador Easum served as President and CEO of AAI from 1980 to 1988, and devoted three decades of his career to strengthening relations with the African continent.

Prior to assuming the presidency of AAI, Ambassador Easum held a long and distinguished career in the U.S. Foreign Service. He spent nearly 30 years in the U.S. Foreign Service at posts in Nicaragua, Indonesia, Senegal, Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, and Niger. He served as U.S. ambassador to Burkina Faso from 1971 to 1974 and Nigeria from 1975 to 1979.

While serving as ambassador to Nigeria, Ambassador Easum’s influence contributed to a successful transition from a military regime to a democratically elected government. Additionally, he hosted President Jimmy Carter on the first-ever state visit of a U.S. President to Sub-Saharan Africa, as well as visits from Ambassador Andrew Young, former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations and AAI Board of Trustee.

During the Nixon Administration, he served as Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs.


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