Paul Russo

Ambassador Paul A. Russo’s public service and private sector experience spans over thirty years, having served in numerous senior positions in business, government and national politics.

Paul Russo

He was the United States Ambassador to Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean from 1986 through 1988, a position which required confirmation by the United States Senate. Mr. Russo is currently the president of Capital Finance, a Washington firm that specializes in the development and financing of projects in the Middle East. Over the past two decades, through Capital Finance and its affiliated companies, Mr. Russo has provided strategic planning and tactical advice to foreign governments and international corporations, offering a wide range of services, including counsel and training for executive managers, and guidance in media relations. During the past several years, Ambassador Russo’s focus has been on the United Arab Emirates, and he also recently completed a major housing project in northern Iraq for the Kurdistan Regional Government. For over a decade, Ambassador Russo has been an Adjunct Professor at Georgetown University; he is currently teaching a course on the modern U.S. Presidency as part of Georgetown University’s Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies Program. During Ronald Reagan’s first term in the White House, Mr. Russo served as Special Assistant to the President for Political Affairs; he was Deputy Under Secretary of Labor and a member Ronald Reagan’s senior staff during his three presidential campaigns. As Director of Congressional Relations in the 1980 campaign, Mr. Russo acted as the principal contact with members of the United States House and Senate for Governor Reagan and the senior campaign staff, and he also was Director of Candidate Operations in New Hampshire during the primary season. In 1978, he founded and then served as Executive Director and Treasurer of “Campaign America,” a political action committee chaired by former U.S. Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole. In 2002, Ambassador Russo became a founding member of the Board of Counselors of Layalina Productions, a bi-partisan group of American foreign policy leaders that works to help strengthen U.S./Arab relations by fostering cultural, educational, and professional dialogues via avenues such as television programming, films, and publications; he also served as the organization’s interim president in 2013. Since 1990, Mr. Russo has served on the Board of Directors of the Council of American Ambassadors and has participated in numerous diplomatic study missions, including missions to Israel and the Palestinian territories; Ireland and Northern Ireland; and Mexico and Canada during NAFTA negotiations. Ambassador Russo also serves on the Board of the Council for American Universities Abroad, and he recently became a member of the Board of Directors of Levant Investment Bank (LIBank), a Beirut-based institution that focuses on investment banking and wealth management services in the Levant region. A native of Ohio, Mr. Russo holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Ohio State University, with additional studies at Case-Western Reserve University and Georgetown University.