President Barack Obama nominated Allan J. Katz of Florida, to be Ambassador of the United States of America to the Republic of Portugal in November 2009. The nomination was confirmed unanimously by the U.S. Senate in March 2010. Ambassador Katz was sworn in on March 26, 2010, and presented his credentials to the President of the Portuguese Republic, His Excellency Aníbal Cavaco Silva on April 28, 2010.
Ambassador Katz is a lawyer by background who has been active in local and national politics for many years. Prior to entering private legal practice, Ambassador Katz was Assistant Insurance Commissioner and General Counsel for the State of Florida Insurance Department. In Washington, D.C., he served as General Counsel of the U.S. House of Representatives Commission on Administrative Review (1976-1978); as Legislative Director for Congressman David Obey (1975-1976); and Legislative Assistant to Congressman Bill Gunter (1972-1974).
In the private sector, he practiced insurance law at the firm of Akerman Senterfitt in Tallahassee, Florida from 2004 to 2010. Previously, Mr. Katz was the managing partner of Katz, Kutter, Alderman & Bryant, P.A., also in Tallahassee, from the firm's inception in 1987.
Ambassador Katz has experience with a broad range of public policy issues, including growing energy needs in Florida and around the world, as well as complex business negotiations. He has been a member of the Democratic National Committee and served on the National Finance Committee of "Obama for America" where he helped draft the party's policy position for the 2008 Democratic National Convention. In Florida, Ambassador Katz was elected as Commissioner for the city of Tallahassee from 2003 to 2009, and he was also appointed by the state of Florida to serve on the Board of Directors for Citizens Property Insurance Corporation, the largest property insurer in Florida.
Ambassador Katz has been recognized for his work as lawyer and a community leader. The Environmental Defense Fund and the Florida Wildlife Federation Fund honored him with the, "Champion for Climate Change" award. He has been recognized as a leading lawyer by many organizations including "The Best Lawyers in America for Insurance Law" and "Chambers USA."
Ambassador Katz holds a B.A. from the University of Missouri-Kansas City and a J.D. from the American University Washington College of Law in Washington D.C.