Mr. Raffi V. Balian

Director of the Regional Environmental, Science & Technology, and Health (ESTH), U.S. Embassy in Budapest

Raffi V. Balian serves as Director of the Regional Environmental, Science & Technology, and Health (ESTH) Office for Central and Eastern Europe, including the Caucasus, based at the U.S. Embassy in Budapest.  In this capacity, he is responsible for the U.S. State Department’s engagement on transboundary ESTH issues with 20 countries in the region.  Previously, he served as Senior Advisor on Bioenergy and Renewable Energy in the newly-formed Bureau of Energy Resources at the U.S. Department of State.  In that role, he led the United States representation to the International Renewable Energy Agency’s inaugural governing Council and was part of the small team that initiated and implemented the U.S. Government’s engagement with the UN Sustainable Energy for All initiative.  He also led the U.S. Government’s representation to the Global Bioenergy Partnership for three years, where he helped negotiate the first internationally agreed-upon set of sustainability indicators for modern bioenergy.  Mr. Balian has also served on the climate change team in the Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs and as advisor to the Special Envoy for Climate Change on Europe and renewable energy.  He was a Pearson Congressional Fellow in the office of U.S. Senator Kirsten E. Gillibrand of New  York.  Mr. Balian has previously served as Cultural Affairs Officer at the U.S. Embassy in Sofia, Bulgaria and as Deputy Chief of the Economic/Commercial Section of the U.S. Embassy in Damascus, Syria, in addition to serving as the Croatia Desk Officer and Regional Political/Military Officer for the Western Balkans at the Department.  In 2011 and 2012, Mr. Balian was an Adjunct Professor of U.S. Foreign Policy at the University of Maryland, College Park.  He is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and received his Master of Science degree from the London School of Economics and Political Science.