A lawyer by training and a military officer of the reserve, Thomas Matussek joined the German foreign service in 1975. After three years as First Secretary at the German Embassy in London, dealing i.a. with German-British associations, he worked in the Federal Chancellery under Chancellor Helmut Schmidt, with special responsibility for European affairs. Foreign assignments in New Delhi (press) and Lisbon (economics) followed. Back in Bonn he served as Head of Foreign Minister Genscher’s private office (1991 to 1992) and Chief of Staff for Foreign Minister Kinkel (1992 to 1994). From 1994 to 1999 he was Minister and Deputy Chief of Mission in Washington DC. From 1999 to 2002 he served as Director General for Political Affairs at the Federal Foreign Office with responsibilities for the Middle East, Asia, Africa and Latin America. In 2001 he organized the Petersberg Conference (Bonn agreement), which led to the founding of the new state of Afghanistan.
From 2002 to 2006 he was Germany’s Ambassador to the Court of St. James’s. From 2006 to 2009 he represented Germany as Permanent Representative and Ambassador to the United Nations in New York. His last assignment in the German Foreign Service was Ambassador to India from 2009 to 2011.In 2011 he became Head of Public Affairs of Deutsche Bank. From 2013 to 2016 he was Managing Director of the Alfred Herrhausen Gesellschaft, the international forum of Deutsche Bank.
Since 2016 he is senior advisor of the London consulting firm Flint.
Ambassador Matussek sits on a number of boards of national and international nonprofit organizations. He has been Chairman of the Deutsch-Britische Gesellschaft since 2021.