Annual Report 2014 | American Foreign Service Association
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commissioning, tenure and promotion into, and within, the Se-

nior Foreign Service. Senate staff had raised concerns about the

adequacy of vetting done prior to nomination. We addressed these

concerns, in close collaboration with the State Department. There

is ongoing work to ensure that future lists of names continue to re-

ceive expeditious treatment, but our Hill relationships are working.

Also in April, the AFSA Board approved a series of issue pa-

pers and provided them to the State Department as input to the

2014 Quadrennial Diplomacy and

Development Review. These papers

cover issues ranging from security

overseas, the economic and public

diplomacy cones, use of technology,

career paths and other issues. AFSA

working groups composed of a mix

of active-duty and retiree members

drafted and refined the papers. They

were a down payment on AFSA’s con-

tinuing engagement with the QDDR

office. I believe this engagement is

paying off in terms of a new QDDR that recognizes and supports

the critical role played by the Foreign Service in our diplomacy.

And I won’t be surprised if some of the ideas in our papers appear

in the final QDDR.

Continuing Challenges

As we start 2015, renewing our commitment to the profession of

diplomacy on behalf of our country, we can take a certain amount

of comfort in the vitality of our professional association and union.

We should not, however, be complacent. Career development re-

mains a priority concern, as promotions slow and the expansion

of political appointees at mid levels of our agencies continues

apace. For all of us and especially our retiree members, we must

remain vigilant in opposition to efforts to cut federal pensions.

We at AFSA will look to our four pillars of strength in making the

case to the American public that a professional Foreign Service is a

critical asset to our country, needed now more than ever. I believe

this advocacy will resonate and become an issue in the 2016 presi-

dential campaign. Let’s work together and stand up collectively for

the Foreign Service.


Executive Assistant

to the President

Patrick Bradley.

Governing Board Members:

(from left) Neeru Lal, Amb. Ed Marks, Marshall Adair, Chuck Fee, Homeyra Mokhtarzada, Jeri Dible,

Sharon Wayne, David Mergen, Matthew Asada, Larry Cohen, Robert Silverman, F. Allen ‘Tex’ Harris, Angela Dickey, Ken Kero-Mentz,

Todd Crawford, Mark Prescott, Nancy Rios-Brooks, Clayton Bond, Ronnie Catipon, William Kutson, Steve Morrison. (

Not pictured:

Sue Saarnio, Jeffrey Cochrane, Dan Spokojny, Amb. Charles Ford, Alex Copher, Andre De Nesnera, Barbara Farrar, Amb. David Greenlee,

Andrew Levin, Ronita Macklin, Elise Mellinger, Rachel Nelson, Mark Petry, Jason Singer, Michael Thomas, Lillian Wahl-Tuco, David Zwach.)