Ambassador Princeton N. Lyman was appointed United States special envoy for Sudan on March 31, 2011. Immediately preceding his tenure as special envoy, he served as U.S. senior advisor on North-South Negotiations, where he led the U.S. team focused on supporting on-going negotiations between the parties to Sudan’s 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement. Ambassador Lyman previously worked as an adjunct senior fellow for Africa policy studies at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR). He is also an adjunct professor at Georgetown University. From 1999 to 2003, he was executive director of the Global Interdependence Initiative at the Aspen Institute.
Ambassador Lyman’s previous career in government included assignments as deputy assistant secretary of state for African affairs (1981-1986), U.S. ambassador to Nigeria (1986-1989), director of refugee programs (1989-1992), U.S. ambassador to South Africa (1992-1995), and assistant secretary of state for international organization affairs (1996-1998). From 2008-2010, he was a member of the African Advisory Committee to the United States Trade Representative. He began his government career with the U.S. Agency for International Development and served as USAID director in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, from 1976 to 1978.
Ambassador Lyman is a member of several boards, including, the Fund for Peace, the National Endowment for Democracy, and the board on African science academy development for the National Academy of Sciences.
Ambassador Lyman has a PhD in political science from Harvard University. He has published books and articles on foreign policy, African affairs, economic development, HIV/AIDS, U.N. reform, and peacekeeping. He has published op-eds in The Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Baltimore Sun, Miami Herald, Los Angeles Times, and International Herald Tribune. His book, "Partner to History: The U.S. Role in South Africa’s Transition to Democracy" (U.S. Institute of Peace Press), was published in 2002. He was co-director of the Council on Foreign Relations Task Force Report, "More Than Humanitarianism: A Strategic U.S. Approach Toward Africa", issued in 2006, and co-editor of "Beyond Humanitarianism: What You Need to Know About Africa and Why It Matters" (Council on Foreign Relations) published in 2007.