Stephen F. Smith

Director NATO Office of Security

  • Last updated: 18 Feb. 2011 10:40

Stephen F. Smith is the Director of the NATO Office of Security. He is the principal security advisor to the NATO Secretary General and the North Atlantic Council and has the overall responsibility for the effective development of security policy and programmes and their implementation at all NATO civil and military bodies and NATO-wide. He deals with all aspects of protective security, counter-intelligence, intelligence assessment and counter-terrorism in international fora.


The Director acts as Chairman in high level committees, interacts with senior government officials, military officers and discerns the possible political ramifications of the NATO Office of Security (NOS) work. The NOS is responsible for negotiating and implementing Security Agreements with non-NATO nations and international organizations participating in all cooperative activities approved by the NAC.

Mr. Smith is a career member of the U.S. Senior Foreign Service, having served in the Bureau of Diplomatic Security as a special agent since 1985. During his career in the Department of State he has undertaken a broad array of leadership and management assignments in Washington, DC; Lima, Peru; Istanbul, Turkey; Bogotá, Colombia; Bonn Germany; Ankara, Turkey; Cairo, Egypt and Islamabad, Pakistan. Prior to assuming his duties as Director NOS he served as the Regional Security Officer (RSO) and senior security advisor to the US Ambassador to Pakistan. In his most recent assignments, Steve led the Secretary of State’s protective security detail, was RSO in Germany, Bureau Security Advisor for the Office of the Secretary of State, Executive Secretariat, and from 2002 to 2010 held the post of the senior security advisor for the US missions in Turkey, Egypt and Pakistan.

While having been recognized for superior performance throughout his career, Mr. Smith’s most cherished award was in 1992 when the US Marine Security Guard Battalion, responsible for the world-wide staffing of marines for US diplomatic missions, awarded him the “RSO Leadership Award” in recognition of his exemplary work with the MSG Detachment in Istanbul. Most recently, he earned consecutive Superior Honor Awards for his outstanding performance in Turkey, Egypt and Pakistan. He was promoted into the Senior Foreign Service while in Cairo and earned a Senior Foreign Service Performance Award in 2007. Steve completed his challenging and rewarding Pakistan assignment in July 2010. After service on the Department of State’s 2010 Promotion Board, he assumed his Director NOS position in December, 2010.

Mr. Smith is married to Terri Lawler Smith and has two daughters.