Table of Contents Table of Contents
Previous Page  50 / 108 Next Page
Basic version Information
Show Menu
Previous Page 50 / 108 Next Page
Page Background

50

SEPTEMBER 2017

|

THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL

FOCUS

ON EXEMPLARY PERFORMANCE & CONSTRUCTIVE DISSENT

Faced with growing evidence of

malfeasance in intercountry adoptions

in Uganda, this FSO decided on a

course of constructive dissent

to correct the problem.

Pushing State

to Prevent Illegal

Adoptions

BY WENDY BRAFMAN

Wendy Brafman joined the Foreign Service in 2005.

She has served in Kinshasa, Cairo, Baghdad, Kam-

pala and Washington, D.C. Before joining the For-

eign Service, she was in private law practice, worked

for a nongovernmental rule of law organization in Kosovo and

served as a congressional staffer. Ms. Brafman’s husband is also

a Foreign Service officer. She received a 2017 William R. Rivkin

Award for Constructive Dissent by a Mid-Level Officer.

S

hortly before I left for Uganda in 2015,

a good friend adopted a girl from South

Asia. My friend was filled with a host

of emotions: She was overjoyed by the

prospect of welcoming a child into her

life; exhausted by the amount of time and

energy spent on the process; and nervous

that amid the mountain of documents,

background checks and legal proceed-

ings, she might have missed one crucial detail that could derail

the entire adoption.

Nevertheless, she eagerly anticipated the arrival of her newly

adopted daughter. We threw her a baby shower, helped her set

up and decorate her daughter’s bedroom, and discussed plans

for the child’s new life in the United States. When that day finally

arrived, all my friend’s doubts and worries were washed away,