His Excellency Mauro Vieira is the ambassador of Brazil to the United States. Prior to his appointment to the United States, he was the Brazilian ambassador to Argentina. Vieira has also held several positions at the Brazilian Ministry of Foreign Relations, including chief of staff to the secretary-general and chief of staff to the minister of external relations. From January 2003 to May 2006, he was the representative of the Brazilian Ministry of External Relations to the board of directors of Itaipu Binacional hydroelectric power plant. He has also held positions in other Brazilian federal agencies, having previously served as secretary for managerial modernization at the Ministry of Science and Technology, assistant secretary-general for science and technology, and national secretary for management in the National Institute for Social Security at the Ministry of Social Security and Assistance. Abroad, Vieira served at the embassy in Washington, D.C. (1978-1982); the mission to the Latin American Integration Association (ALADI) in Montevideo (1982-1985); the embassy in Mexico City (1990-1992); and the embassy in Paris (1995-1999). He has received decorations from the governments of Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Peru, Mexico, Portugal, Spain, France, Denmark, Norway, the Netherlands, Poland and Romania. Vieira holds a J.D. from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro and graduated from Instituto Rio Branco, the Brazilian diplomatic academy.