Ambassador James A. Joseph served as ambassador to South Africa from 1996 to 1999. He was the first and only U.S. Ambassador to present his credentials to President Nelson Mandela. He was awarded the Order of Good Hope by South African President Thabo Mbeki, which is the highest distinction awarded to a citizen of another country. He also was an incorporating director of President George H.W. Bushâ€™s Points of Light Foundation and was the first chairman of the board of directors of President Clintonâ€™s Corporation for National Service.