The Foreign Service Journal - October 2014 - page 53

THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL
|
OCTOBER 2014
53
AFSA NEWS
GRIFFITHJ.DAVIS
On July 14, the U.S. Agency
for International Develop-
ment hosted the daughter of
one of the first African-Amer-
ican Foreign Service o•cers
to serve in its ranks.
Dorothy Davis, daughter of
Gri•th J. Davis, made a pre-
sentation at a brown
bag lunch on USAID’s
history from the per-
spective of someone
who served at the
time of its creation.
The event was
sponsored by
USAID’s O•ce of
the Administrator
and the O•ce of
Civil Rights and Diversity, in
partnership with the Blacks
in Government Employee
Resource Group.
Gri•th J. Davis joined the
U.S. Foreign Service in the
early 1950s, becoming one
of the pioneers of President
Harry Truman’s Point Four
Program for foreign aid,
the forerunner of the
present-day USAID.
Dorothy Davis
spoke about her
father’s work, drawing
from a report he wrote
at the conclusion of his
four-year mission to
Liberia in 1957. Gri•th Davis
was also a skilled photojour-
nalist and had worked as
a correspondent for
Ebony
magazine, among other publi-
cations. He used this talent in
his Foreign Service career to
convey information on situa-
tions in the field.
In addition to serving
in Liberia, Davis’s career
included posts in Tunisia and
Nigeria. He retired from the
Foreign Service in 1985, and
died in 1993.
Ms. Davis presented
USAID Administrator Dr. Rajiv
Shah with a vintage photo-
graph her father took while in
Liberia (which tied for second
place in the 2011 USAID/
Frontlines
50th-anniversary
photo contest). The photo
depicts a Liberian woman
walking alongside an iron ore
train; the railroad system in
Liberia was supported by the
Point Four Program.
Also attending the event
were USAID Counselor Susan
Reichle and AFSA Vice Presi-
dent Sharon Wayne.
n
–Chioma Dike,
USAID Sta‡ Assistant
A USAID History Lesson
PATRICIAADAMS
AFSA HOLDS TOWN HAL L MEET I NG FOR STATE CONST I TUENCY
AFSA’s priorities, plans and progress were presented to AFSA’s State Department constituency in a town hall
meeting with AFSA President Robert J. Silverman and State Vice President Matthew Asada.
The “AFSAMid-Term Review,” held on Aug. 21 at AFSA headquarters, gave active-duty State members the chance
to hear from their constituency vice president and president over lunch. Silverman opened the well-attended meet-
ing, possibly the first of its kind ever held at AFSA, and encouraged the audience to ask questions and participate in
the discussion, as the event was also an opportunity for AFSA to solicit feedback and comments.
Asada then took the floor and outlined the agenda for the meeting. He began with AFSA’s 2013-2015 Strate-
gic Plan, which outlines priorities and guides AFSA’s e‹orts. Silverman followed with remarks on advocacy and a
review of AFSA’s work on a number of issues, including overseas comparability pay and the ambassadorial confir-
mations.
Asada concluded with a discussion of AFSA’s outreach e‹orts, including the annual report, the quarterly State
VP updates and surveys and webinars. A lively question-and-answer session followed. To see a video recording of
the entire event, visit
NEWS BRIEF
Dorothy Davis at USAID.
Gri“th J. Davis took this photo when he served in Liberia in 1952. The iron
ore railroad was supported by President Truman’s Point Four Program.
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