Stanford University Asia-Pacific Research. Center, Stanford, CA, since September. In his current role as Shorenstein Distinguished Fellow, Michael Armacost has been at the Walter H. Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center (Shorenstein APARC) since 2002. In the interval between 1995 and 2002, Armacost served as president of Washington, D.C.'s Brookings Institution, the nation's oldest think tank and a leader in research on politics, government, international affairs, economics, and public policy. Previously, during his twenty-four year government career, Armacost served, among other positions, as undersecretary of state for political affairs and as ambassador to Japan and the Philippines.
Armacost began his career in academia, as a professor of government at Pomona College. In 1969, he was awarded a White House Fellowship, and was assigned to the Secretary and Deputy Secretary of State. Following a stint on the State Department's policy planning and coordination staff, he became a special assistant to the U.S. ambassador in Tokyo from 1972 to 74, his first foreign diplomatic post. Thereafter, he held senior Asian affairs and international security posts in the State Department, the Defense Department, and the National Security Council. From 1982 to 1984, he served as U.S. ambassador to the Philippines, and was a key force in helping the country undergo a nonviolent transition to democracy. In 1989, President George Bush tapped him to become ambassador to Japan, considered one of the most important and sensitive U.S. diplomatic posts abroad.
A native of Ohio, Armacost graduated from Carleton College and earned his master's and doctorate in public law and government from Columbia University.