The Foreign Service Journal, July-August 2012

One’s day does not expand to ac- commodate schoolwork, of course. Students have to find time to read and write while fulfilling the regular obli- gations of work and family. Depart- ment of State participants, however, can take heart. Many of the other stu- dents are Army Reserve or Army Na- tional Guard who juggle their commitment to the military with their day jobs (one of my seminar-mates is a senior manager for Lexmark; another is the chief financial officer of a large university) and their home lives. The AWC distance learning pro- gram has benefited me in several ways. First, it was excellent mental training; my cognitive faculties haven’t received such a workout since college. Second, I acquired new tools that will benefit me as a strategic planner and leader for the department. And, per- haps most gratifying of all, I took on a challenge and succeeded. Robert Hilton FSO Washington, D.C. Heeding Jefferson’s Words I enjoyed the article by Greg Naar- den about our first Secretary of State in the April edition of AFSA News , “This Month in Diplomatic History: Thomas Jefferson.” Mr. Naarden rightly describes Jefferson’s affinity for the French. Indeed, the Secretary was very perplexed when France started attacking our ships in 1798. In a letter to Elbridge Gerry, dated Jan. 26, 1799, Jefferson wrote: “The first object of my heart is my own country. In that is embraced my fam- ily, my fortune and my own existence. I have neither one fiber of attachment out of it, nor a single motive of prefer- ence of any one nation to another, but in proportion as they are more or less friendly to us.” That sentiment might well be ti- tled, “The American Interest.” Along with a portrait of Jefferson, I had the quote hanging in my office during my long tenure in the regional office of the Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs, where we dealt regularly with the competing interests of Greeks and Turks; Arabs and Israelis, and Indians and Pakistanis. I commend Jefferson’s words to all members of the Foreign Service. Edward A. Padelford FSO, retired Bethesda, Md. New President, Former Grantee Germany’s new president, Joachim Gauck, is a former International Visi- tor program grantee, once again demonstrating the great value of this State Department program in select- ing individuals with future leadership potential in their respective countries. In 1992, I accompanied Herr Gauck on a 30-day tour of the U.S. as his escort interpreter. Tremendously impressed by my traveling companion, I told him as he left New York to re- turn to Berlin that I was sure I was looking at a future president of Ger- many. When I reminded him of this in congratulating him on his overwhelm- ing election by a special assembly on March 18, he replied that he indeed remembered my prophecy. But, he added, “Try as I might at the time to believe it, I simply could not. Rather, I found it highly amusing.” Dean Claussen Senior FSO (USIA), retired Bellevue, Wash. ■ CORRECTION In the obituary for Kevin Morgan, on p. 61 of the May issue of the Jour- nal , Mr. Morgan’s wife, Tatiana, a Civil Service employee of the Department of State who lives with the couple’s two daughters in Virginia, was not listed among the survivors. We sincerely re- gret this error. J U LY- A U G U S T 2 0 1 2 / F O R E I G N S E R V I C E J O U R N A L 9 CHANGE OF ADDRESS Moving? Take AFSA With You! Change your address online, visit us at address_change.aspx Or Send change of address to: AFSA Membership Department 2101 E Street NW Washington, DC 20037