Vacancy Details


Announcement Number:
Hiring Agency:
Embassy Sofia
Position Title:
Protocol Assistant/Translator
Open Period:
11/26/2019 - 12/09/2019 Format MM/DD/YYYY
Vacancy Time Zone:
LE - 0120 7
Not Specified
Work Schedule:
Full-time - 40 hours per week
Promotion Potential:
Duty Location(s):
1 Vacancy in

Sofia, BU
Telework Eligible:
For More Info:
HR Section


Hiring Path:
• Open to the public
Who May Apply/Clarification From the Agency:
All Interested Applicants / All Sources

For USEFM - FS is 07.  Actual FS salary determined by Washington D.C.

Security Clearance Required:
Public Trust - Background Investigation
Appointment Type
Appointment Type Details:
Indefinite subject to successful completion of probationary period
Marketing Statement:

We encourage you to read and understand the Eight (8) Qualities of Overseas Employees before you apply.


The work schedule for this position is:

  • Full Time (40 hours per week)

Start date: Candidate must be able to begin working within a reasonable period of time (one month) of receipt of agency authorization and/or clearances/certifications or their candidacy may end.

Supervisory Position:
Relocation Expenses Reimbursed:
Travel Required:
Not Required


Basic Function of the Position 

Serves as Translator and Protocol Assistant for the Ambassador and the Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S.Embassy, Sofia. Assists with routine office administrative tasks, such as making phone calls, drafting correspondence, researching information and coordinating meetings with host government. Position holder is responsible for maintaining translation records, files and database. Position is responsible for receiving, logging, fielding and tracking all incoming invitations. Position is also heavily responsible for event management, logistics and planning for events. Serves as interpreter from English to Bulgarian and vice-versa.

Qualifications and Evaluations


EXPERIENCE:  Three years (full-time equivalent) of progressively responsible secretarial, protocol or translation work experience is required.



  • Broad knowledge of a wide range of specialized vocabulary (e.g. economic, political, protocol, legal, military, etc.) to participate in any conversation, meeting, or conference with fluency and precision.

  • Good understanding of Bulgaria's major political and business issues as well as recent developments in U.S. - Bulgarian relations.

  • Familiar with the Bulgarian political system and key political figures.

  • Expected to develop and master strong knowledge of diplomatic terminology in Bulgarian and English. 

  • Good knowledge about the details of official protocols and formalities and ability to work with the most senior officials of both the U.S. Government and Bulgarian Government with comfort and tact. 

  • Position holder must be aware of major news stories and issues as well as local holidays, festivals, customs and traditions and inform the Executive Office accordingly on a regular basis. 

Education Requirements:

Bachelor's Degree/University Diploma in Public/Business Administration, Linguistics, English or American Literature, Foreign Language Studies/Philology is required.


This will be tested:

LANGUAGE:  Level IV (fluent) speaking/reading/writing English is required. Level IV (fluent) speaking/reading/writing Bulgarian is required.


  • Ability to interpret (including simultaneous) and/or translate with no supervision for extended number of hours and under tight deadlines;

  • Skilled in using the professional simultaneous interpreting equipment;

  • Grasp ideas spoken and heard only once and express these ideas in Bulgarian or English instantly, accurately, and completely in the appropriate style and with the original intent of the speaker;

  • Ability to translate Bulgarian language documents into English with nearly the spelling, punctuation, and syntax accuracy of a well-educated native English speaker.

  • Ability to make public speeches (good diction, clear articulation, etc.) as well as to cope with stress while interpreting, is required. 

  • Have excellent interpersonal skills, social sensitivity, sound judgement, self-confidence, and capability of working smoothly and tactfully with levels of contacts in a sensitive environment;

  • Good computer skills to use standard Microsoft Office (Word, Power Point, Outlook and Excel), various Internet applications, and other work-related applications;

  • Ability to handle key aspects of meeting set-up and ordering of events;

  • Position holder must have strong organizational and prioritization skills; 

  • Ability to quickly write correct English and Bulgarian, either as part of interpretation duties or to record what was said after the fact;

  • Ability to plan, manage time, and successfully meet deadlines and adapt to changing priorities.


All applicants under consideration will be required to pass medical and security certifications.

Benefits and Other Info

Agency Benefits:

For Locally Employed Staff, the U.S. Mission in Bulgaria provides a competitive benefits package in addition to the base pay salary.

For EFMs, benefits should be discussed with the Human Resources Office.

The pay plan is assigned at the time of the conditional offer letter by the HR Office.

Other Information:

HIRING PREFERENCE SELECTION PROCESS:  Applicants in the following hiring preference categories are extended a hiring preference in the order listed below.  Therefore, it is essential that these applicants accurately describe their status on the application. Failure to do so may result in a determination that the applicant is not eligible for a hiring preference.


  1. AEFM / USEFM who is a preference-eligible U.S. Veteran*


  3. FS on LWOP and CS with reemployment rights **

* IMPORTANT:  Applicants who claim status as a preference-eligible U.S. Veteran must submit a copy of their most recent DD-214 (“Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty”), equivalent documentation, or certification.  A “certification” is any written document from the armed forces that certifies the service member is expected to be discharged or released from active duty service in the armed forces under honorable conditions within 120 days after the certification is submitted by the applicant. The certification letter should be on letterhead of the appropriate military branch of the service and contain (1) the military service dates including the expected discharge or release date; and (2) the character of service.  Acceptable documentation must be submitted in order for the preference to be given. 

** This level of preference applies to all Foreign Service employees on LWOP and CS with re-employment rights back to their agency or bureau.

For more information (i.e., what is an EFM, USEFM, AEFM, MOH, etc.?) and for additional employment considerations, please visit the following link.

EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY (EEO):  The U.S. Mission provides equal opportunity and fair and equitable treatment in employment to all people without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, political affiliation, marital status, or sexual orientation.

How to Apply

How to Apply:

All candidates must be able to obtain and hold a Public Trust clearance. 

To apply for this position click the “Submit Application” button.  For more information on how to apply visit the Mission internet site.

Required Documents:

Please provide the required documentation listed below with your application:

  • Copy of Orders/Assignment Notification (or equivalent) - for EFMs only

  • Residency and/or Work Permit for non-Bulgarian citizens

  • Degree / University Diploma (not transcript)

  • DD-214 - Member Copy 4, Letter from Veterans’ Affairs, or other supporting documentation (if applicable)

  • SF-50 (if applicable)

Next Steps:

Applicants who are invited to take a language or skills test, or who are selected for an interview will be contacted via email. 

For further information - the complete position description listing all of the duties, responsibilities, required qualifications, etc. may be obtained by contacting the Human Resources Office at Sofia_Applications@state.gov 

Thank you for your application and your interest in working at the U.S. Mission in Bulgaria.