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THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL

|

JULY-AUGUST 2017

59

AFSA NEWS

able Joseph Sullivan as chair-

man, Karl Sprick as treasurer

and Amy Madsen as secre-

tary. Members of the Foreign

Service who are interested

in joining the group should

contact Joe Sullivan at

(925) 954-8294 or

joseph_sullivan@hotmail.com

.

—Ásgeir Sigfússon,

Director of Communications

AFSA Membership

Even More Valuable

in Retirement

Because many AFSA

members don’t realize that

their membership does not

automatically carry over into

retirement, their member-

ship lapses unintentionally

when they retire. But over the

last few years members have

discovered that AFSA mem-

bership may be even more

valuable in retirement.

AFSA is an indispensable

partner in navigating retire-

ment, staying plugged into

the foreign affairs community

and amplifying the voices

of retirees as they tell the

story of the Foreign Service.

In the last two years, well

over half of AFSA members

in the State Department’s

Job Search Program signed

up for retiree membership

during or immediately after

the course, with a record

79 percent joining from the

August 2016 JSP class.

The JSP teaches that the

first rule of networking is to

stay active in a professional

association. For diplomats,

that’s AFSA, keeping mem-

bers in touch with more than

16,000 colleagues, active

and retired, many of whom

have mastered the transition

to retirement and are happy

to share their insights. The

annual Retiree Directory and

The Foreign Service Journal

keep retirees connected.

Of course, retiree coun-

seling is a big part of AFSA’s

retiree services. With a

wealth of experience, AFSA’s

membership staff can help

with situations unique to the

Foreign Service. They also

arrange a number of work-

shops and presentations

from experts in their fields,

from health services to Thrift

Savings Plans.

AFSA keeps its retiree

members aware of new pro-

fessional developments with

The Foreign Service Journal

,

including the powerful new

online digital archive of all 99 years of publication, as well as the “AFSA Retiree News- letter” and the media digest

,

a popular daily clipping

service of articles on Foreign

Service topics.

AFSA encourages all

retiree members to consider

joining the

Speakers Bureau,

which enables us to actively

engage our communities on

the importance of a strong

Foreign Service, no matter

where we live.

The most important rea-

son to continue AFSA mem-

bership in retirement is to

help us educate Americans

on the critical role the For-

eign Service plays in advanc-

ing American interests and

American global leadership.

Our voice is stronger when

we speak together.

n

—Todd Thurwachter,

Retiree Counselor