Ambassador Ashe holds the distinction of being the longest serving mayor of Knoxville. During his time in office, from 1988 to 2003, he was the President to the U.S. Conference of Mayors from 1994 to 1995 and received their Distinguished Service Award for Leadership in 2003.
Ashe served as the United States Ambassador to Poland from June 2004 to October 2009. In 2004, he was a Fellow at Harvard University’s JFK Institute of Politics.
From 1968 until 1974, Ashe served as a Tennessee State Representative. In 1975, he was elected State Senator and held office until 1984. Ashe served in 1967 as a staff assistant to US Sen. Howard Baker. He was executive director of the Americans Outdoors Commission, 1985-1987 chaired by Sen. Lamar Alexander (then Governor).
Five U.S. Presidents, beginning with President Ronald Reagan, have named Ashe to different federal positions. He is the first former Ambassador and local elected official to serve on the BBG.
Ashe currently sits on the Board of the National Trust for Historic Preservation and the American Rivers Association, and is a former member of the AmeriCorps Board of Directors. He is president of the Great Smoky Mountains Conservation Association, chair of the Tennessee Clean Water Network, both based in Knoxville, Tenn., and chair of the Douglas Henry State Museum Commission located in Nashville, Tenn.
Ambassador Ashe earned a B.A. in History from Yale University in 1967 and graduated from the College of Law at the University of Tennessee in 1974.
Ashe is a member of the Strategy and Budget Committee, serves as Corporate Board Vice Chair of Radio Free Asia (RFA), sits on the audit committee of Radio Free Asia. He also chairs the audit committees of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty and the Middle East Broadcasting Networks. He is also the Vice Chair of the Board of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty.
Ashe was confirmed to the board on June 30, 2010 to a term expiring on August 13, 2010. By law, any member whose term has expired may serve until a successor has been appointed and qualified.
He is married to the former Joan Plumlee and they have two children: J. Victor and Martha.
Ashe welcomes comments and views on BBG issues. He can be reached by phone at 865 523-6573, email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or mail addressed to his residence at 3709 Kingston Pike, Knoxville, Tenn., 37919.