John H. Burns

Class of
John H. Burns

John H. Burns

“During his career in government, John Burns came to be one of the most highly respected members of the State Department and…went well beyond the official requirements of his office to help improve the conduct of this nation’s foreign affairs.”
Henry Bellmon, 1977


Oklahoma native John Burns graduated from the University of Oklahoma in 1935 and entered Foreign Service as Vice-Consel in Mexico in 1941. He continued his work around the world in such positions as Embassy Officer in Brazil (1944-1947), Department of State Staff in Washington, D. C. (1948-1950), the Foreign Service Inspection Corps (1952-1954), Ambassador to the Central African Republic (1961), and Director General of Foreign Service (1969). After his retirement, he returned to Pauls Valley.

Fun fact

After his retirement in 1971, John Burns established Oklahoma’s first chapter of the National Audobon Society and pursued graduate work in the field of History of the American West at OU.

Oklahoma connections

Burns was born in Pauls Valley, Oklahoma.


Pauls Valley






No items found.
No items found.