Ambassador Tacan Ildem was appointed Assistant Secretary General for Public Diplomacy in March 2016. He advises the Secretary General on public diplomacy issues and directs the Public Diplomacy Division (PDD), which plays a key role in conveying the Alliance’s strategic and political messages to opinion formers and to the public in general. PDD works to raise the Alliance’s profile with audiences world-wide and to build support for Alliance operations and policies.
Ambasador Ildem is a senior Turkish diplomat. Since the start of his career in 1978, he has held positions involving multilateral and bilateral affairs. Before assuming his current responsibilities, Ambassador Ildem served as Permanent Representative of Turkey to the OSCE in Vienna from 2011 until 2016. During his term in Vienna he performed the duties as the Chairperson of the OSCE Security Committee and as the Coordinator for Conflict Cycle for the Helsinki +40 process.
Previously Ambassador Ildem was Director General for International Security Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) in Ankara (2009-2011), Turkey’s Permanent Representative to NATO (2006-2009) and Ambassador of Turkey to the Kingdom of the Netherlands (2003-2006). His earlier assignments include Chief of Cabinet and Principal Foreign Policy Advisor to the President of the Republic of Turkey (2000-2003) when he also acted as the Presidential Spokesperson; Special Advisor to the Undersecretary of the MFA; Head of the NATO and Western European Union Department; Minister-Counsellor and Deputy Chief of Mission at the Turkish Embassy in Athens; Head of the NATO Military Affairs Department at the MFA; Political Counsellor and Spokesperson at the Turkish Embassy in Washington D.C.; and First Secretary at the Permanent Mission to NATO as well as at the Turkish Embassy in New Delhi.
Through these roles Ambassador Ildem has accumulated extensive experience in the international security domain with particular involvement in transatlantic relations. He has taken part in a number of key NATO initiatives, including the development of the 2010 Strategic Concept.
Ambassador Ildem was born in 1956 and is a graduate of Ankara University Political Science Faculty with a specialisation in international relations.