Dan Larsen is an Advisor to The Asia Group, based in the Philippines, and a former senior foreign service officer who served in the Philippines and throughout Asia over a 29-year career with the U.S. Department of State. As a career Foreign Service Officer, he held a range of political, security policy, economic, and management positions abroad, serving in embassies in the Philippines, South Korea, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. He also has held senior roles in Washington, where he served as Director for Australia, New Zealand and Pacific Island Affairs, Deputy Director and Acting Director for Korea, and Desk Officer for New Zealand and the Pacific Islands.
During his FSO career, Dan worked extensively on the maintenance of political and security relations with key allies and held senior organizational and management roles in missions across Asia and in Washington. In Manila, he served as Deputy Political Counselor, with a focus on political, military, and security issues and responsibility for managing relationships with a wide array of senior Philippine Government and civil society contacts. Between postings in Manila, he also served as Deputy Economic Counselor in Seoul, where he coordinated macro-economic and financial issues and liaised with U.S. Departments of Commerce and Agriculture on key Korean peninsula issues.
In Washington, Dan served as Director for Australia, New Zealand, and the Pacific Islands, where he formulated, coordinated, and implemented U.S. foreign policy for the 14 nations covered by this major desk, and served as the State Department’s voting member to monitor and account for over USD 250 million in U.S. assistance for two Pacific island nations. He also served as Acting Director for Korea, where he personally conducted negotiations for the release of five U.S. citizens from North Korea and maintained extensive communications with senior policy makers, including at the White House and in Congress, on a full range of bilateral political and economic issues.
Prior to joining the U.S. Government, Dan directed the Hong Kong Office of a U.S. contractor charged with supporting refugees from Vietnam as they sought resettlement in the United States. He currently resides with his wife, Cherry, in Manila.