Member of the Council of Advisors, United States Studies Centre
Ambassador John Thomas (Tom) Schieffer is a member of the US Studies Centre's Council of Advisors.
Schieffer served as the United States Ambassador to Australia from July 29, 2001, to April 1, 2005, when he was sworn in by Secretary Rice as the United States Ambassador to Japan. He served there until January 20, 2009. As Ambassador to Australia, he coordinated closely with the Australian government on efforts to fight global terrorism and helped to deepen cooperation on rebuilding efforts in Afghanistan and Iraq. He was also heavily involved in the conclusion of a free trade agreement between the US and Australia in May 2004. As Ambassador to Japan, he worked to strengthen the US-Japan alliance, increase trade, and facilitate the realignment of US forces stationed in Japan.
Prior to his diplomatic service, Schieffer was an investor in the partnership that bought the Texas Rangers Baseball Club in 1989, with George W. Bush and Edward W. ‘Rusty' Rose. He served as Team President for eight years, responsible for day-to-day operations of the club as well as overseeing the building of The Ballpark in Arlington, Texas. Schieffer has also had a long involvement in Texas politics. He was elected to three terms in the Texas House of Representatives and has been active in many political campaigns.
Schieffer attended the University of Texas, where he earned a B.A. and M.A. in international relations, and studied law. He was admitted to the State Bar of Texas in 1979. Schieffer founded and remains active in Envoy International LLC, which largely does consulting work on international affairs for clients on both sides of the Pacific.