Diplomats at an Embassy

How to Address a Counselor
How to Address a First Secretary
How to Address a Second Secretary
How to Address a Third Secretary
How to Address an Attaché
How to Address an Assistant Attaché

All the diplomats listed above are addressed with the honorific to which they are entitled/prefer – Mr./Mrs./Ms./Dr./etc.+(Name).   Only an ambassador has a special form of address: See the list of links to the types of ambassadors below.  See also the example in the first Q&A on this page (below): How to Address a Diplomat.

—-Envelope:
—-—-Mr./Mrs./Ms./Dr. (Full Name)
—-—-(Diplomatic Rank / Office)
—-—-Embassy of (Official Name of Country)
—-—-(Address)

—-Salutation:
—-—-Dear Mr./Mrs./Ms./Dr. (Surname):

—-Conversation:
—-—-Mr./Mrs./Ms./Dr. (Surname)

Robert Hickey author of "Honor & Respect"

How to Address a Diplomat?

How should I address foreign diplomats who are not the ambassador – rather, they are in the ambassador’s office. Their positions are:
—-Counselor, Deputy Chief of Mission
—-Counselor, Congressional Liaison Officer
Thanks in advance for your assistance,
—————– Ellen

Dear Ellen:
Only an accredited ambassador who has presented his credentials to the chief-of-state – or head of the international organization – is addressed as ‘His/Her Excellency (Full Name)’ or in direct address ‘Your Excellency’.

Everyone else at a foreign embassy is:

—-Address block on the letter:

—-—-Mr./Mrs./Ms. (Full Name)
—-—-(Office Title)
—-—-Embassy of (Official Name of Country)
—-—-(Address)

 ————-Which looks like:
 ————-Mr. Ivan Franceus
 ————-Counselor, Congressional Liaison Officer
 ————-Embassy of the Kingdom of Belgium
 ————-1234 Peacock Street, N.W.
 ————-Washington, DC 5678

—-In a salutation they would be
—-—-Dear Mr./Mrs./Ms. (Surname):

‘Counselor’ is not used before the name as an honorific in writing. Include their (office) after their name for identification as pertinent.

RE: Use of ‘Mrs.’ or ‘Ms.’: Internationally ‘Ms.’ is not as ubiquitous as it is in the U.S., but a foreign diplomat serving in the U.S. would be familiar with it. For more on honorifics for women see the post Mrs. vs. Ms.

– Robert Hickey  How to Address a Counselor — How to Address an Attaché — How to Address Secretary

Robert Hickey author of "Honor & Respect"

When Should You Use the Forms on this Page?

You can use these forms of address for any mode of communication: addressing a letter, invitation, card or Email. (If there are differences between the official and social forms of address, I will have mentioned the different forms.)  The form noted in the salutation is the same form you say when you say their name in conversation or when you greet them.

Not Finding Your Answer?

—-#1)  At right on desktops, at the bottom of every page on tablets and phones, is a list of all the offices, officials & topics covered on the site.

—-#2)  If you don’t see the official you seek included or your question answered send me an e-mail. I am pretty fast at sending a reply: usually the next day or so (unless I am traveling.)  Note: I don’t have mailing or Email addresses for any of the officials and I don’t keep track of offices that exist only in history books.

—-#3)  If I think your question is of interest to others, Sometimes I post the question  – but always change all the specifics.

— Robert Hickey 

Robert Hickey author of "Honor & Respect"