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John Campbell is the Ralph Bunche senior fellow for Africa policy studies at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR).
From 1975 to 2007, Campbell served as a U.S. Department of State Foreign Service officer. He served twice in Nigeria, as political counselor from 1988 to 1990 during the military dictatorship of General Ibrahim Babangida, and as ambassador from 2004 to 2007 during the civilian presidency of General Olusegun Obasanjo.
Ambassador Campbell’s additional overseas postings include Lyon, Paris, Geneva, and Pretoria during South Africa’s transition to non-racial democracy from 1993 to 1996. Past domestic assignments in the U.S. Department of State include deputy assistant secretary, Bureau for Human Resources; dean , School of Language Studies, Foreign Service Institute; and director of the Office of UN Political Affairs.
From 2007 to 2008, he was a visiting professor of international relations at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He was also a Department of State mid-career fellow at the Woodrow Wilson School, Princeton University. Prior to his career in the Foreign Service, he taught British and French history at Mary Baldwin College in Staunton, Virginia.
Campbell received a BA and MA from the University of Virginia as well as a PhD in seventeenth century English history from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.