Foreign Policy Advisor

Irvin Hicks Jr.

United States European Command CJTF-HOA Foreign Policy Advisor Biography

Irvin “Irv” Hicks Jr. joined the Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa (CJTF-HOA)’s leadership team after serving as Deputy Chief of Mission for U.S. Embassy Nouakchott, Mauritania. Mr. Hicks is a second generation Foreign Service Officer who spent his formative years growing up in Africa and Europe. Upon graduating from grade school in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania and high school in Berlin, West Germany; Mr. Hicks received his undergraduate degree from George Washington University where he majored in International Affairs and African studies. Mr. Hicks also received a Master’s of Arts degree from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy from Tufts University, and a Masters of Arts degree in National Security Studies from the Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island.

Prior to joining the State Department, Mr. Hicks worked for several non-government agencies that included the African-American Institute, Entrepreneurs International, and the U.S.-South African Leadership Exchange Program. He also served on Senator Edward Kennedy’s foreign policy staff, and worked as a corporate executive for General Motors’ Africa and Middle East Operations. Mr. Hicks has served as Management Officer for U.S. missions in Guinea, Gabon, Sierra Leone, Nigeria, Mauritius, Brazil and Burundi.

Mr. Hicks’ Washington, D.C. assignments include the Office of Management Policy, Right-sizing and Innovation, as well as the Africa Bureau where he served as a Management Counselor rover where he supported U.S. missions in West Africa engaged in the fight against the Ebola pandemic.

Proficient in French, Mr. Hicks also speaks Portuguese, German and Amharic. He is currently studying Somali, Tigriyna and Wolof to further his African linguistic skills.

An avid tennis player, Mr. Hicks enjoys physical fitness as well as reading books about the African continent, American diplomacy, world history, strategy and leadership.

Djibouti is Mr. Hicks’ 38th country on the continent.

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A U.S. Army major assigned to Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa earned the Common Security and Defence Policy Service Medal for Planning and Support from the European Union Feb. 23, 2019. Maj. Aaron Testa, who serves as the defense liaison officer to the U.S. Embassy in Bangui, Central African Republic, received the medal from Portuguese Maj. Gen. Hermínio Maio, mission force commander of the European Union Training Mission-Central African Republic, during a ceremony in Bangui.

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Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa hosted a Capstone Military Leadership Program for newly-promoted, U.S military general and flag officers from around the globe at Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti, Feb. 13-14, 2019.