Mr Robert F Godec, a counter-terrorism official has started his tour of duty as the acting US ambassador to Kenya.
Mr Godec, who has been serving as the principal deputy coordinator in the Bureau of Counterterrorism at the State Department, replaces Mr Stephen Nola who has been holding office since the beginning of this month.
Even though the length of his stay in Nairobi has not been specified, it is understood that Mr Godec’s brief includes making preparations for Kenya’s next elections.
A statement from the embassy stated: “The US embassy in Nairobi is pleased to announce the arrival of Ambassador Robert F. Godec, who assumed duty as Chargé d’Affaires of the US Mission in Kenya beginning August 27, 2012.’’
He is likely to serve until early next year when a new US President takes office.
The position fell vacant following the resignation of Mr Scott Gration following differences with Washington over “his leadership style”. (READ: Why Obama ally quit as Kenya ambassador)
Even though Mr Gration had deep roots in Kenya, he said he was not ready to play along the leadership and priority setting that the Obama administration expected.
Mr Godec, who served at the US embassy in Nairobi in the late 1990s, is expected to lead American interests in the region.