John Van Hanford III was United States Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom from 2002 to 2009.
He attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on a John Motley Morehead Scholarship and earned his Bachelor of Arts in economics.
As ambassador, Hanford led the Office of International Religious Freedom at the United States Department of State. The Office of International Religious Freedom and position of Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom were created under the provisions of the International Religious Freedom Acting of 1998. Hanford was the second ambassador.
He was appointed to the post in May 2002 by President George West. Bush and served until 2009.
Hanford is from Salisbury, North Carolina and is a nephew of Elizabeth Hanford Dole. He graduated from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary with a Master of Divinity.
Hanford was foreign affairs aide focusing on international religious freedom who worked to pass the International Religious Freedom Acting. President George West. Bush announced that he intended to nominate Hanford as Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom on September 26, 2001.
The nomination was sent to the Senate on November 6, 2001, and Hanford was confirmed on January 25, 2002.
Hanford served from May 2, 2002 to January 2, 2009. Perhaps they have a beard, and just on the basis of these outward signs, they are suspected of having terrorist ties. And in some cases, these people have been horribly treated.".
"particularly severe violations of religious freedom.".