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60

JULY-AUGUST 2017

|

THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL

AFSA NEWS

iLead Speaker Series

Features AFSA President

On April 21, AFSA President

Ambassador Barbara Ste-

phenson spoke on commu-

nication in leadership at the

State Department. The event

was organized by the depart-

ment’s Culture of Leadership

Initiative (iLead).

iLead is a voluntary

group of employees work-

ing together to strengthen

leadership skills and practice

throughout the department.

Following its inaugural Leader-

ship Day in December, the

group has organized a series

of speakers, which began

with a discussion on “model-

ing integrity” given by State

Department Transparency

Coordinator Janice Jacobs.

Amb. Stephenson’s talk

covered the importance of

communication in leadership.

“Each of us has an obligation

to lead fromwhere we are,”

she stated, and discussed

her experiences as a leader

throughout her career. It can

be hard to define what leader-

ship is, Amb. Stephenson

continued, but it is possible to

define what a leader

does

.

Amb. Stephenson recom-

mended “active listening” as

a first step in leading a team,

and emphasized the impor-

tance of a consistent clear

message when engaging with

strategic partners. It is also

important, she said, to listen

to those partners, who may

have a different cultural or

agency perspective, and to

factor these perspectives into

the overall vision.

Following her remarks,

Amb. Stephenson participated

in a question and answer

session with the enthusiastic

audience.

n

—Gemma Dvorak,

Associate Editor

AFSA ANNOUNCES

NAT I ONAL H I GH SCHOOL ESSAY

CONTEST WI NNER

Nicholas DeParle

11th grade

Sidwell Friends School

Chevy Chase, Maryland

Nicholas will receive a $2,500 prize, a meeting with

the Secretary of State and a tour of the U.S. Insti-

tute for Peace, and a full-tuition-paid voyage with

Semester at Sea on his enrollment at an accredited

university.

Coverage of Nicholas’s visit will appear in a future

issue of AFSA News.

RUNNER - UP

Manuel E. Feigl

12th grade

Brashier Middle College Charter High School

Simpsonville, South Carolina

Manuel will receive a $1,250 prize and a full

scholarship to participate in the International Diplo-

macy Program of the National Student Leadership

Conference, held in Washington, D.C., annually.

n

NEWS BRIEF

Join us for Happy Hours

Since fall 2016, AFSA has

hosted several networking

happy hours, drawing more

than 60 people to each event

in the first six months of

2017.

These events offer attend-

ees the opportunity to min-

gle, share experiences and

news, and reconnect with the

Washington, D.C., Foreign

Service community as they

come back from assignments

overseas. At right, AFSA

members, staff and guests at

the June 1 happy hour.

Non-members are

welcome to attend future

happy hours, where they can

learn more about the Foreign

Service and the work its

members do.

Visit the AFSA website,

www.afsa.org/events,

for

information about upcom-

ing Happy Hours and other

interesting events through

AFSA.

n