A career member of the Senior Foreign Service, Patricia Aguilera assumes the duties of the Chargé d’Affaires for the U.S. Embassy in the Dominican Republic. Aguilera has served in the country since July 2023, holding the position of Deputy Chief of Mission, until September 28, 2023.
Patricia most recently served as the acting Director for International Narcotics and Law Enforcement (INL) for Mission Mexico, where she was responsible for the policy and strategy for the $3.4 billion security assistance program implemented across Mexico’s 32 states and federal government. Under her tenure, the United States and Mexico implemented the Bicentennial Framework for Security, Public Health, and Safe Communities to establish a comprehensive, long-term approach for binational actions to pursue the safety and security of both countries.
Prior to her time in Mexico, Patricia served as the Director for the Intelligence Watch (INR) in the Operations Center, the Department’s 24-hour nerve center that monitors global events. She led the team that briefed the Secretary and other Department officials on breaking intelligence and coordinated communication with the Intelligence Community during crises. As Director for American Citizen Services and Crisis Management, Patricia led the creation and implementation of the current Travel Advisory system still in use by the Department today. She oversaw the Department’s inaugural Consular Hostage Recovery group and implemented interagency operating procedures for the return of wrongfully detained U.S. citizens abroad.
Patricia served as Foreign Policy Advisor to Marine Corps Central Command Forward in Bahrain; Special Assistant to the Under Secretary for Political Affairs covering among other portfolios Western Hemisphere Affairs; and Eagleburger Fellow to Boeing Commercial. Other tours include to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean, the Netherlands Antilles, and as a Watch Officer in the Department’s Operations Center.
A native of Texas, Patricia has a BA in Political Science and MA in International Relations from St. Mary’s University in San Antonio, Texas.