04 June 2013

Australia’s new Ambassador to Israel

From the Indian Herald, May 29, 2013, by Rohit Revo, Editor:
Dave Sharma, newly appointed Australian Ambassador to Israel with PM Julia Gillard
 
...Devanand Sharma ...has been appointed as the Australian Ambassador to Israel ... "Dave" Sharma is of Indian Heritage and his high profile appointment is something that has made Australian Indians something to be proud of. At 37 years, ...has also made history by becoming Australia’s youngest Ambassador.
Dave Sharma has earlier served in the Australian diplomatic offices as Counsellor at the Australian Embassy in Washington, Third Secretary at the Australian High Commission in Port Moresby and as Senior Civilian Adviser with the Peace Monitoring Group in Bougainville. Dave Sharma was also an Adviser to Foreign Minister Alexander Downer from 2004 – 2006.
Dave Sharma is a senior career officer with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) and was most recently Assistant Secretary in the Africa Branch, and previously, Acting First Assistant Secretary, International Division in the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet.
Dave studied in Turramurra high school and when he finished in 1993, he got the highest HSC Tertiary rank of 100 in the state of NSW. He was also the highest ranked student in NSW Public schools that year.
He later studied law in University of Cambridge in UK as part of his undergraduate studies followed by studying medicine in University of Sydney and topped it up with a Masters in International Relations from Deakin University.
Dave Sharma will be accompanied to Israel by his wife Rachel and their three daughters.
Australia has been a strong supporter of the State of Israel since its establishment, and was one of the first countries to grant official recognition and to establish diplomatic relations. The Australian Embassy in Israel opened in 1949.
Talking to Indian Herald, Dave said, “This is a high profile posting as Israel is such an important part of the world for us. We also have a big Jewish community in Australia and have taken a close interest in this relationship.”...
His grandfather was a Brahmin priest from UP in India who moved to Trinidad in 1908.  Talking about his family Dave said, “My father was the youngest of 9 children. My father was born in 1928 in Trinidad and currently lives in Sydney. He however spends time between Trinidad, Australia and Canada.”
“My father did a Law Degree and he married my mother Diana who was from Sydney in 1964. They met each other in Kings College in University of London, where both of them were studying. Lot of my father’s relatives were working in law firms. I am the first one in the family in the field of Foreign Service.”
...Australia and Israel enjoy a significant trade relationship worth more than $900 million a year. Australian exports to Israel include coal, meat and aluminium, with imports including gems, manufactured items and telecommunications equipment.