He entered the Italian Foreign Service in May 1978.
In September of 1981 he was posted to the Embassy of Italy in Beijing as First Secretary for Economic and Commercial Affairs with responsibility also for bilateral and multilateral development co-operation programs with China.
From 1984 to 1989 he served at the Permanent Mission of Italy to NATO in Brussels, with the rank of Counsellor with primary focus on disarmament issues, HLTF, CDE, CFE. He also served as a Delegate to the Senior Political Committee.
In 1989 he returned to Rome and was assigned to the Office of the Diplomatic Adviser to the President of the Republic, where he remained until 1992. In this task, he covered a wide range of international issues, both bilateral and multilateral, relevant to all aspects of the international activity of the Italian President.
Later in 1992 he was posted at the Embassy of Italy in Washington, D.C. as First Counsellor for Economic and Commercial Affairs, with special focus also on financial issues, relations with IMF and World Bank, and defense industry co-operation.
In 1996 he was assigned to the Permanent Mission of Italy to the United Nations in New York, with primary responsibilities for political affairs and UN reform. During this period he served as a member of the Italian delegation in the UN Security Council in 1996 and as a member of the Italian delegations to the 50th, 51st, 52nd and 53rd UN General Assemblies.
In 1999 he returned to the home office at the Department of Personnel and later at the Office of the Secretary General of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs as direct collaborator to the Secretary General.
In February 2002 he was appointed Deputy Director General for Political Multilateral Affairs (Deputy Political Director), responsible for NATO, United Nations, G8, disarmament, OSCE, anti-terrorism and human rights issues.
In June 2005 he was named Director General for the Americas, with responsibility for the relations of Italy with the United States and Canada, as well as all the countries of Latin America.
In October 2007 he takes up his duties as NATO Deputy Secretary General.
He is married to Laura Denise Noce Benigni Olivieri; they have a daughter and a son. Hobbies and personal interests include classical music, reading, sailing, flying.