Amb. Oscar de Rojas is Professor of United Nations Studies and International Development at Long Island University and Assistant Dean in the College of Education, Information and Technology.
He retired from service in the United Nations in 2009 after serving for 10 years as Director of the Financing for Development Office in the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs. Mr. de Rojas was responsible for the organization of the well-known International Conference on Financing for Development held in Monterrey, Mexico, in March 2002, and was Executive Secretary of the Follow-up Conference held in Doha, Qatar, in 2008. The DESA/FfD Office was established to provide support to the various UN intergovernmental processes related to the follow-up of those conferences.
Before joining the United Nations in 1999, Mr. de Rojas had served for 27 years in the Venezuelan Foreign and Civil Services, attaining the rank of Ambassador, and holding senior-level posts in his country’s diplomatic missions at the UN headquarters, in both New York and Geneva, in Paris, as well as in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Caracas. He was Director for International Technical Cooperation between 1980 and 1983, and Director-General for International Economic Affairs and Cooperation between 1990 and 1992. While serving as Deputy Permanent Representative of Venezuela in Geneva, he was President of UNCTAD’s Trade and Development Board and, as DPR in New York, served as Chairman of the General Assembly’s Economic and Financial Committee in 1997-98. He has attended, in one capacity or other, every UNGA session since 1974. His effective managerial, leadership, diplomatic and interpersonal skills are well known.
After his UN retirement, Mr. de Rojas took the position of Professor of International Studies at Long Island University’s CW Post campus and Visiting Scholar at St. John's University's summer campus in Rome, Italy. He also founded, and is president of, "Inter-continental Consulting Services, Inc.", a start-up firm based in Long Island, New York, to provide advisory services in a wide range of areas of interest to UN offices and corporate entities and individuals, national and international, in both the public and private sectors.
Amb. de Rojas has a Bachelor degree in Engineering and Masters degrees in Economics and in International Affairs from Columbia University. He has received awards and distinctions from several countries and entities, including the United States, the Holy See, Brazil, Chile, France, Malta and St. John’s University. He is a Knight of the Sovereign Hospitaller Order of Malta and is engaged in various development policy, human-rights and humanitarian assistance organizations, including the Latin American Foundation for the Promotion of Human Rights, the UN Association of the United States, NYC's Crossroads Cultural Center and the new South-South News organization. In 2004 he was named honorary consultor to the Vatican Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace.
Mr. de Rojas was born in Havana, Cuba, in 1947, and holds both US and Venezuelan citizenships. He is married, with two sons, and is fluent in English, Spanish and French.