The U.S. Senate on December 16 confirmed President Joe Biden's nomination of Nicholas Burns as U.S. ambassador to China.
The Senate voted 75-18 to confirm Burns, 65, a career diplomat who has served under both Democratic and Republican presidents.
Burns is currently a professor of the Practice of Diplomacy and International Relations at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government. He is also Executive Director of the Aspen Strategy Group and Security Forum and Senior Counselor at the Cohen Group.
During his State Department career, Burns served as under secretary of State for Political Affairs, ambassador to NATO and to Greece, State Department spokesman and on the National Security Council staff on Soviet and Russian Affairs.
Burns first went to China in 1988 accompanying Secretary George Shultz and in 1989 accompanying President George H.W. Bush. He visited China several times as spokesman with Secretaries Warren Christopher and Madeleine Albright.
Burns earned his B.A. degree from Boston College and an M.A. from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies.