Roberta Jacobson. Photo: Americas Society


U.S. Ambassador Roberta Jacobson will soon be leaving Mexico, having officially presented her resignation to the post, according to a statement issued on Thursday, March 1, by the Mexican Foreign Relations Secretariat.

The statement said that on Saturday, Feb. 17, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson informed his Mexican counterpart, Luis Videgaray, that Jacobson had resigned her position and that the Donald J. Trump administration would soon be issuing a request to the secretariat for approval of her replacement.

That request was formally presented on Tuesday, Feb. 20, and on Monday, Feb. 26, SRE informed the U.S. State Department that the approval had been granted.

According to U.S. Embassy sources, Jacobson will step down effective May 5.

There has been much speculation as to who that replacement will be, but, so far, no announcement.

Some inside sources have suggested that the new U.S. ambassador to Mexico will be Edward Whitacre Jr., a former chief executive of General Motors and AT&T who has in the past done business with Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim.

Jacobson, who served less than two years as ambassador to Mexico, was appointed under the administration of Barack Obama.

Her long-delayed confirmation came none too soon for the much-neglected two-way relationship, and nearly 10 months of caretaker diplomacy at the U.S. Embassy in Mexico.

Jacobson, who is a seasoned career diplomat with more than  30 years of service under her belt, had previously served as deputy chief of mission at the U.S. Embassy in Lima, Peru, and spent four years as director of the Office of Policy Planning and Coordination in the Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs, and  four years as assistant secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs.

Jacobson diplomatically shepherded through the delicate transition of U.S.-Cuban ties out of an archaic Cold War-era animosity into a more realistic and upbeat budding rapprochement.

During her stint in Mexico, she maneuvered numerous difficult situations with grace and decorum, always keeping a discreet smile on her face but firmly presenting her government’s views and positions.

Focusing always on areas of bilateral agreement and cooperation, Jacobson tactfully downplayed two-way tensions between the United States and Mexico.

The announcement of Jacobson’s departure comes at a difficult time in U.S.-Mexican relations, following close on the heels of a canceled visit to Washington by Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto.








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