Some time while all of France was en vacances, a moving truck pulled up at pretty nice place on Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré. Mr. Sarkozy's new neighbor? Charles Rivkin, freshly confirmed as U.S. ambassador to France. An entertainment executive, whose stint as CEO of the Jim Henson Company generated some unfortunate comparisons between diplomacy and the Muppets, Mr. Rivkin fits the mold of many past U.S. ambassadors to high-profile posts: he raised $500,000 for Obama in California. But hey, he's young, good-looking, optimistic about the impact of Obama's election on U.S.-France relations, and a fluent French speaker. Interestingly, his family, in memory of his late father who was ambassador to Gambia, Senegal, and Luxembourg, gives an annual award to a middle level officer of the U.S. Foreign Service for constructive dissent. The French would have killed if the post had been given to Caroline Kennnedy, but after that debacle over the naming of Hillary Clinton's successor, no way was that going to happen. So, I'm hoping they'll give Mr. Rivkin the benefit of the doubt and that he'll do us Americans proud.
You can find Rivkin's bio on the U.S Embassy in Paris Web site here and an interesting story from the New York Times about his appointment here.