The Foreign Service Journal - July/August 2017
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Retirees Light

Up the Map

For the second year, AFSA

encouraged Foreign Service

retirees to send letters to the

editor of their local news-

paper on the occasion of

Foreign Service Day in May.

AFSA sees this as an oppor-

tunity to bring education and

understanding of the Foreign

Service to our fellow citizens

in every corner of the country.

Last year’s pilot project

resulted in 15 placements;

this year, we far exceeded

our expectations with letters

from retirees being published

in 40 newspapers across 19

states, from Rhode Island to


Newspapers such as the

Philadelphia Inquirer, San

Francisco Chronicle, Portland

(Maine) Press Herald, Tulsa



Providence Journal

featured letters from retired

diplomats, explaining what

the Foreign Service does for

the nation and why it’s impor-

tant to our national security

and economic prosperity.

Combined, the 40 papers

have a circulation of more

than two million. This initia-

tive will continue next year,

and we hope to reach even

more Americans in 2018.

Speakers Bureau Hits

Milestone Seven

Months Early!

Thanks to the willingness

of AFSA retiree members

to share their expertise and

volunteer their time, AFSA

has already hit its year-end

goal for Speakers Bureau

membership numbers.

At the beginning of the

year, the bureau had 382

members, and we set a goal

of 425 members by the end

of 2017. To our surprise and

delight, we hit our goal on

May 17. The Speakers Bureau

now has more members than

at any time previously.

We plan to focus on

increasing speaking engage-

ments for the rest of the year,

and will rely on members

of the bureau to seek out

opportunities in their home

towns and make a connec-

tion with AFSA.

If you have not yet joined

the Speakers Bureau but

would like to help AFSA tell the

story of the Foreign Service,

or if you would like to request

a speaker for a school, college

or community group, visit

Spotlight on

Florida “Super Team”

of Retirees

Last month at our annual

awards ceremony, AFSA

bestowed the award for con-

tributions to the association

to John S. Wood, a leader of

The Foreign Service Group–

Texas in Austin, Texas.

Here we want to highlight a

group of Foreign Service retir-

ees in Florida who have risen

to the challenge of engaging

in local outreach and advo-

cacy—not just for AFSA, but

in collaboration with our stra-

tegic partners such as Global

Ties U.S. and the U.S. Global

Leadership Coalition.

Their enthusiasm and

efforts have already paid

off; it is no accident that our

letters-to-the-editor campaign

resulted in eight letters pub-

lished in Florida newspapers!

We want to thank Mike

Boorstein, Judy Carson, John

Caulfield, Ambassador Har-

riet Elam-Thomas, Ambas-

sador Samuel Hart, Ambas-

sador James McGee, Donna

Oglesby, Jeff and Linda

Olesen, Dorothy Watson and

Frank Young for their willing-

ness to join us in telling the

Foreign Service story across

Florida, and we invite other

Florida retirees to join these


Foreign Service

Association of

Northern California

The Foreign Service Associa-

tion of Northern California

held a well-attended lun-

cheon on May 13 featuring a

fascinating presentation on

Korea and the United States

by retired FSO and former

Ambassador to Korea Kath-

leen Stephens, who is now a

Stanford University fellow.

FSANC also elected its

new officers and advisory

board, including the Honor-

Members of the “Florida Super Team” put forward ideas for outreach to the

American public, including key audiences and ways to work with strategic