H.E. Ambassador Oscar de Rojas
Since September 2015, Ambassador Oscar de Rojas is the Permanent Observer of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta to the United Nations. He also keeps the position of Director of Global Partnerships at Long Island University, in Brookville, New York, where he teaches courses in Development, Latin American History, and United Nations Studies, and coordinates a program of internships for students in UN IGO/NGO offices.
Before his present functions, Amb. de Rojas had served for ten years as Director of the Financing for Development Office in the United Nations’ Department of Economic and Social Affairs. He was responsible for the organization and execution of the successful International summit Conference on Financing for Development convened in Monterrey, Mexico, in 2002, and served also as Executive Secretary of its follow-up conference held in Doha, Qatar in 2008. The UN Office he directed until 2009 was created to provide support to the inter-governmental processes related to the follow-up of those two major global conferences. Amb. de Rojas’ effective leadership, managerial, diplomatic and inter-personal skills, as well as his integrity and impartiality, are well known in United Nations circles and earned him the respect of countries from all regions and groups.
Before joining the United Nations in 1999, Amb. de Rojas had served for 27 years in the Venezuelan Foreign and Civil Services, attaining the rank of ambassador, and holding senior-level posts in that country’s diplomatic missions at the UN headquarters, in both New York and Geneva, in Paris, as well as in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Caracas. He was Director for International Technical Cooperation between 1980 and 1983, and Director-General for International Economic Affairs between 1990 and 1992. While serving as Deputy Permanent Representative of Venezuela in Geneva, he was President of UNCTAD’s Trade and Development Board and, as DPR in New York, served as Chairman of the General Assembly’s Economic and Financial Committee in 1997-98. In terms of academics, in addition to his work at L.I.U., Amb. de Rojas has been a visiting professor at St. John’s University´s Master in Globalization and Development program in Rome and professor of development policy at Catholic University in Caracas, Venezuela.
Amb. de Rojas has a Bachelor’s degree in Engineering and Master’s degrees in Economics and in International Affairs from Columbia University. He also earned a Certificate in International Economics from the Institut International d'Administration in Paris and has received awards and distinctions from several entities, including the United States, France, Brazil, Chile, and the OAS. He is a Knight of Grace and Devotion in Obedience of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta and Vice-President of the Order’s Venezuelan Association. Amb. de Rojas is also engaged in various development-policy, human-rights and cultural organizations, including the Latin American Foundation for Human Rights, the USA/UN Association, and the New York Crossroads Cultural Center. In 2000 he was awarded the Grand Cross of the Order of St. Gregory the Great by Pope St. John Paul II and appointed Consultant to the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace.
Amb. de Rojas was born in Cuba, grew up in Venezuela and also is a US citizen. He lives in Long Island with his wife and sons, and is fluent in English, Spanish and French.