Ron McMullen is the University of Iowa’s Ambassador in Residence and previously served as U.S. Ambassador to the State of Eritrea. A former career diplomat, Ron has over 30 years of global experience and has lived, worked, or traveled in 106 countries. In Burma he worked closely with Nobel Peace laureate Aung San Suu Kyi and pro-democracy groups. While posted in Fiji he helped prevent civil conflict after an armed takeover of parliament. He was shot at during a riot in Sri Lanka and helped train mongooses to detect heroin. He survived a voodoo curse in the Dominican Republic and took Hillary Clinton on a tour of South Africa’s Robben Island with Nelson Mandela. Between foreign assignments Ron taught for three years at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and later served as Diplomat-In-Residence at the University of Texas at Austin. He has authored a number of scholarly works and is a three-time recipient of the State Department’s Superior Honor Award.
Since joining the University of Iowa faculty in 2012, Ron has received the Honors Program Teaching Award and a Collegiate Teaching Award from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. A native of Northwood, Iowa and a graduate of Drake University, he earned his doctorate in political science from the University of Iowa.