un·​der·​sec·​re·​tary ˌən-dər-ˈse-krə-ˌter-ē How to pronounce undersecretary (audio)
variants or under secretary
: a secretary immediately subordinate to a principal secretary
often capitalized when used as a title
the British Undersecretary for India
the Under Secretary of the Treasury

Examples of undersecretary in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The point person at the Department of Energy is David Crane, undersecretary for infrastructure. Llewellyn King, Forbes, 13 Feb. 2024 Kevin Gover, a co-chair of the task force and the Smithsonian’s undersecretary for museums and culture, said the report reflected a drastic change in the way the Smithsonian has grappled with human remains that were collected during a different era. Claire Healy, Washington Post, 23 Feb. 2024 Thomas Shannon, a former undersecretary of state who was involved in the removal of two previous Haitian leaders, said the back-and-forth and lack of certainty over who will replace Henry is not helping to stem the crisis. Michael Wilner, Miami Herald, 8 Mar. 2024 Hovde's father, Donald, served in the Reagan administration as undersecretary of Housing and Urban Development. Journal Sentinel, 26 Feb. 2024 Andrei Iancu served as the undersecretary of Commerce for intellectual property and director of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office from 2018 to 2021. Andrei Iancu, Fortune, 10 Nov. 2023 The third in line among Pentagon civilian leadership, the office of the undersecretary of defense for policy, is temporarily an acting position because nominee Derek Chollet has not been confirmed by the Senate, the source said. Peter Alexander, NBC News, 7 Jan. 2024 John Cohen, who served as the former acting undersecretary for intelligence and analysis at the Department of Homeland Security, said Abbott's interpretation is not accurate. Luke Barr, ABC News, 25 Jan. 2024 Having previously served as a district attorney, U.S. Representative, DEA administrator and Homeland Security undersecretary, Hutchinson was most recently the 46th governor of Arkansas from 2015 until 2023, when he was succeeded by Sarah Huckabee Sanders. Virginia Chamlee, Peoplemag, 16 Jan. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'undersecretary.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1687, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of undersecretary was in 1687

Dictionary Entries Near undersecretary

Cite this Entry

“Undersecretary.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/undersecretary. Accessed 23 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


un·​der·​sec·​re·​tary ˌən-dər-ˈsek-rə-ˌter-ē How to pronounce undersecretary (audio)
: a secretary right under a principal secretary
undersecretary of state

More from Merriam-Webster on undersecretary

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