David A. Balton is the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Oceans and Fisheries in the Department of State’s Bureau of Oceans, Environment and Science. In March 2005, following confirmation by the Senate, Mr. Balton attained the rank of Ambassador during his tenure.
Ambassador Balton is responsible for coordinating the development of U.S. foreign policy concerning oceans and fisheries, and overseeing U.S. participation in international organizations dealing with these issues. His portfolio also includes responsibility for overseeing the Department of State’s work on Arctic and Antarctic affairs.
He has functioned as the lead U.S. negotiator on a wide range of agreements in the field of oceans and fisheries and has chaired numerous international meetings. In 2006 and 2010, he served as President of the Review Conference for the 1995 United Nations Fish Stocks Agreement. He also served as Chair of the Senior Arctic Officials during the U.S. Chairmanship of the Arctic Council (2015-2017).
Ambassador Balton previously served for 6 years as Director of the Office of Marine Conservation in the Department of State and for 12 years in the Department’s Office of the Legal Adviser.
Ambassador Balton received his A.B. from Harvard College in 1981 and his J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center in 1985. He has also appeared as a soloist with the National Symphony Orchestra in Washington, D.C. (juggling oranges).