Robert P. Finn is currently Senior Research Scholar in the Liechtenstein Institute at the Woodrow Wilson School of International Affairs of Princeton University and Lecturer in the Woodrow Wilson School. From 2005–8 he was also a lecturer in the Department of Near Eastern Studies at Princeton University. Prior to this he was the Ertegün Visiting Professor of Turcology at Princeton University from 2003–5. He served as the first U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan in more than twenty years, from March 2002 until August 2003. Previously, he had also been the Ertegün Professor at Princeton, after serving as U.S. Ambassador to Tajikistan, 1998–2001. His other diplomatic postings include Istanbul, Ankara ,and Izmir, Turkey; Lahore, Pakistan; and Zagreb, Croatia. He opened the U.S. Embassy in Azerbaijan in 1992. He has received numerous awards from the USG, including two Presidential Meritorious Service Awards and one for heroism.
Ambassador Finn is the author of the book The Early Turkish Novel, which has been published both in English and Turkish. His poems and translations have appeared in the United States, Turkey, France and Pakistan. The University of Texas press published his translation of the Turkish author Nazlı Eray’s novelOrpheus in 2006 and Syracuse University Press will publish his translation of Eray’s The Emperor Tea Garden in 2012. He translated Nobel prize winner Orhan Pamuk’s The Silent House (forthcoming 2012) and is currently translating Pamuk’s Cevdet Bey and His Sons. He co-edited Building State and Security in Afghanistan.
Ambassador Finn holds a B.A. in American Literature and European History from St. John’s University, an M.A. in Near Eastern Studies from New York University, and an M.A. and Ph. D in Near Eastern Studies from Princeton University. He was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Turkey and a Fulbright scholar at Istanbul University. He reads in more than ten languages.