The Foreign Service Journal - July/August 2016
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July-August 2016

Volume 93, No. 6




Celebrating 2016 Merit Award Recipients and Donors / 77 2016 AFSAAwardWinners Announced / 77 State VP Voice–Professional Liability Insurance / 78 USAID VP Voice–Consultants and Annual Evaluations / 79 FAS VP Voice–Thinking Outside the Box / 80 Annual Adair Memorial Lecture / 80 Meet the 2016 AFSAMerit Award Winners / 82 Merit Award Best Essay / 84 Merit Award Art Winner / 84 AFSA Governing Board Meeting / 85 Governing Board Retreat / 85 Book Notes: The Wolf of Sarajevo / 86 AFSA Hosts DS Mingle / 87 Retiree Corner– The Medicare Question / 88 Women’s Political Caucus Honors Marguerite Cooper / 88


President’s Views / 7 Strengthening the Foreign Service BY BARBARA STEPHENSON Letter from the Editor / 8 Career Diplomacy Today BY SHAWN DORMAN Speaking Out / 17 Reforming Entry-Level Assignments BYANDREWKELLY Reflections / 104 High Hopes and Mixed Feelings: Reflections of a Consulate Intern BYWILLIAM ROBERTSON


Letters / 9 Talking Points / 12 In Memory / 90 Books / 95 Local Lens / 106


Classifieds / 97 Real Estate / 100 Index to Advertisers / 103

On the Cover:

Flags of all countries with which the United States maintains diplomatic

relations are on display in the State Department’s main lobby. When new members of the

U.S. Foreign Service receive their first assignments, each is given a small flag of the country

to which he or she is headed. Photo: AFSA/Susan Maitra.


Taking on Family Member Employment. Really! / 21 Family member employment is a critical issue for members of the U.S. Foreign Service. The State Department finally seems to be taking it seriously. BY DEBRA BLOME Tandem Couples: Serving Together, Apart / 28 Two tandems discuss some of the unique challenges they face. BY FRED OD I SHO AND WH I TNEY DUB I NSKY A Roadmap for New Hires: 30 Rules to Survive and Thrive / 35 An experienced FSO ambassador identifies the unique attributes Foreign Service personnel should have and offers a guide to acquiring and perfecting them. BY STEPHEN G . MCFARLAND Examining State’s Foreign Service Officer Hiring Today / 41 Here is an inside look at the process of becoming a Foreign Service officer, considered the “gold standard” in professional recruitment. BY GL ENN J . GU I MOND State Department Opportunities for Students / 45


Long Past Time to Talk About Trauma Raising Awareness and Resilience / 48 Taking better care of employees—from pre-employment to post-employment— makes economic sense, creates better morale and is the right thing to do. BY ANGE LA R . D I CKEY Life After the Foreign Service— What We Are Doing Now, Part II / 52 BY FORMER AND RET I RED MEMBERS OF THE U. S . FORE I GN SERV I CE