Listen to Amb. Kelly on Episode 11: Capacity And Capability: US Diplomatic And Military Operations In The Horn Of Africa
Tom Kelly is Raytheon International’s vice president for Foreign Policy and National Security Affairs. Raytheon Company (NYSE: RTN), with 2017 sales of $25 billion and 64,000 employees, is a technology and innovation leader specializing in defense, civil government and cybersecurity solutions. Raytheon is headquartered in Waltham, Massachusetts.
Before joining Raytheon in January 2017, Kelly served as the U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Djibouti, assuming his duties in September 2014. As Chief of Mission, Kelly supervised U.S. government programs and activities in Djibouti, including assistance programs and annual base-leasing payments in excess of $100 million to support the only enduring U.S. military presence in Africa. He interacted with Djiboutian leaders to promote U.S. interests, oversaw regional counterterrorism operations, and led the U.S. Embassy response to the refugee crisis associated with the conflict in Yemen. During his tenure, more than 15,000 U.S. citizens and their family members escaped the violence in Yemen through Djibouti.
Kelly served as Acting Assistant Secretary and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of the U.S. State Department’s Bureau of Political-Military Affairs from August 2011 to September 2014, running an 11-office bureau with a $41 million budget and 375 employees. He led political-military negotiations in Asia, Latin America and the Middle East; advocated for reforms of U.S. arms transfer, export control and unmanned aerial system policies; and
restructured the bureau to enhance its effectiveness.
Kelly entered the U.S. Foreign Service in 1985. He served in U.S. missions in San Salvador, Santiago), Paris, Quito, Vilnius, Buenos Aires (2007-2010) and São Paulo. In both Vilnius and Buenos Aires, he served as Deputy Chief of Mission in the U.S. Embassies in those capitals. In São Paulo, Kelly served as Principal Officer of one of the world’s largest U.S. consulates. He also worked in the State Department’s Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs (1988-1990) and the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (1998-2000).
Kelly earned a master’s degree in developmental economics from Stanford University in 1994 and a master’s degree in Latin American studies from Georgetown University in 1984. He received his bachelor’s degree from Georgetown’s School of Foreign Service in 1984. Kelly speaks Spanish, Portuguese, French and Lithuanian.