Ambassador Charles Shapiro
Since joining the United States foreign service in 1977, Ambassador Shapiro has held numerous senior positions including Ambassador to Venezuela, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for the Western Hemisphere and chargé d’affaires at the United States Embassy in Trinidad and Tobago, where he led preparations for the visit of President Barack Obama to the Fifth Summit of the Americas. Shapiro’s other foreign postings have included Chile, El Salvador and Denmark and he has held a variety of Washington assignments.
Ambassador Shapiro has been a leading advocate for financial inclusion in the Americas. As advisor to Secretary of State Hilary Clinton, Shapiro led an inter-agency working group to reform banking laws so that developing country entrepreneurs could use moveable assets as collateral to obtain small business loans. He has worked with governments, businesses, bankers and development agencies throughout the hemisphere to encourage access to credit for marginalized groups, entrepreneurship and small business growth, and individual economic autonomy as a means to poverty alleviation and stable democratic development
Trade and Development
Ambassador Shapiro is an experienced practitioner in the field of international trade and investment.He has helped educate and inform U.S. audiences about the potential benefits of free trade agreements with Central America, Peru, Panama, Colombia and South Korea. Recognizing that improved trade requires more than agreements between states, Shapiro has been a hands-on facilitator to help businesses in the United States and Latin America find areas of common interest and opportunity.
Fluent in English and Spanish, Ambassador Shapiro is an authoritative speaker, media commentator and writer on economic and social issues in the Americas.
Speech: Remarks at the U.S. Diplomacy Briefing Series on US Politics in the Caribbean, Washington, DC (2011)
Video: Importance of Open Trade to Florida’s Economy, University of Central Florida (2009)
Video: Latin America’s Economic Challenges, University of Chicago (2009)
Editorial: Latin America: Where Loan Sharks Roam, Miami Herald (2011)
Video: Entrevista con La Prensa Grafica (Panamá)William Melendez, “LA DEMOCRACIA DEBE ENTREGAR LOS BENEFICIOS Y HAY QUE DEMOCRATIZAR EL CREDITO”