The President today announced that he will nominate Wilbert J. Le Melle, of Ossining, N.Y., to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States to the Republic of Kenya and to the Republic of Seychelles. Le Melle is deputy head of the Middle East and Africa program of the Ford Foundation.
He was born November 11, 1931, in New Iberia, La. He received a B.A. in 1955 and an M.A. in 1956 from Notre Dame Seminary and a Ph.D. in 1963 from the Graduate School of International Studies at the University of Denver. He served in the U.S. Army from 1957 to 1959.
From 1956 to 1961, Le Melle was an assistant professor of history and philosophy at Grambling College in Louisiana. In 1961-62 he was a teaching fellow in the department of international relations at the University of Denver, and from 1962 to 1964 he was on the correspondence faculty in political science at the University of Minnesota.
From 1963 to 1965, Le Melle was an assistant professor of government and a research associate at the Center for Development Research of the African Studies program at Boston University. In 1965 he served as a program officer of the Middle East and African Overseas Development program of the Ford Foundation.
From 1970 to 1973, he was deputy representative for East and Central Africa at the Ford Foundation, and he was representative for North Africa at the Foundation until 1976, when he became deputy head of the Middle East and Africa program there.
Le Melle has been a consultant to the Agency for International Development and the Greater Hartford Chamber of Commerce, and director of studies and training for AID personnel at Boston University.
He is the author of several books and numerous articles on Africa. He speaks Latin, Greek, Hebrew, French, German, Spanish, and Swahili.