Steven Pifer, a career foreign service officer, arrived in Kyiv on January 8, 1998, as the third United States Ambassador to Ukraine. Prior to his appointment here, Mr. Pifer served from August, 1996 to August, 1997 as Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for Russian, Ukrainian and Eurasian Affairs at the National Security Council.
Mr. Pifer, of Sebastopol, California, entered the Foreign Service in January, 1978. He was assigned from 1978 to 1980 to the U.S. Embassy in Warsaw as a general services and consular officer. He returned to the State Department in 1980 as a staff assistant in the Bureau of European Affairs and then as a political-military officer in the Office of European Political and Security Affairs. During this time he also participated in the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces negotiations in Geneva. From 1984 to 1985 he was special assistant to Ambassador Paul Nitze, Special Advisor on Arms Control Matters to the President and Secretary of State.
From 1986 to 1988 Mr. Pifer served as a political officer at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow. He returned to the State Department for two years as Deputy Director for Multilateral and Security Affairs in the Office of Soviet Union Affairs. From 1990 to 1993 he was Deputy Political Counselor at the U.S. Embassy in London. He then returned to Washington as deputy to the Senior Coordinator for the New Independent States (the former Soviet Union). At the end of 1994 Mr. Pifer was detailed to the National Security Council staff as Director for Russian, Ukrainian and Eurasian Affairs.
Mr. Pifer is a 1976 graduate of Stanford University with a B.A. in economics. He holds several Superior and Meritorious Honor awards from the State Department. He and his wife, Dr. Marilyn Pifer, have one daughter.