West Palm Beach
Ambassador Otto Reich, Senior Counselor, International Affairs
Prior to joining Ballard Partners, Ambassador Otto Juan Reich served as President of his own consulting firm providing government relations and strategic planning advice to US and multinational clients. He has spent most of his life in foreign affairs, primarily related to Latin America and the Caribbean, including private enterprise, government, and the U.S. military.
In 2001, President George W. Bush selected Ambassador Reich to be the Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs, reporting to Secretary of State Colin Powell, where he served until 2002. He then became President Bush's Special Envoy for Western Hemisphere Initiatives, reporting to Dr. Condoleezza Rice in the National Security Council. With the President's consent, he returned to the private sector in June 2004.
In 1991 and 1992, as a private citizen and at the request of President George H. W. Bush, Ambassador Reich served as Alternate U.S. Representative to the UN Human Rights Commission in Geneva.
In the 1980's, Reich received three appointments from President Ronald Reagan: From 1986 to 1989 he served as U.S. Ambassador to Venezuela, for which he was awarded the highest commendations of both the State Department and the Republic of Venezuela. As Special Advisor to the Secretary of State from 1983 to 1986, he directed the Office of Public Diplomacy for Latin America and the Caribbean, which received the Department's Meritorious Honor Award. From 1981 to 1983, he was Assistant Administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) in charge of multi-billion dollar U.S. economic assistance to Latin America and the Caribbean.
His prior experience includes service as Washington Director of the Council of the Americas; Community Development Coordinator for the City of Miami; International Representative of the State of Florida Department of Commerce; and staff assistant in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Ambassador Reich received a Bachelor's Degree in International Studies from the University of North Carolina and a Master's Degree in Latin American Studies from Georgetown University. His military service (1966 - 1969) included duty as a Lieutenant in the U.S. Army's 3rd Civil Affairs Group (Airborne), Panama Canal Zone. He received the US Army Commendation Medal for his service.
Reich appears regularly on US and Latin American media as a commentator on foreign affairs.