The Foreign Service Journal, September 2017

THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL | SEPTEMBER 2017 75 AFSA NEWS Sinclaire Award Recipients in Action Annually, AFSA recognizes outstanding accomplishments in the study of Category III or IV critical languages and their associated cultures through the MatildaW. Sinclaire Language Awards. Mastery and professional utilization of foreign languages, and knowl- edge of the culture of the host country, are invaluable skills in the Foreign Service. In 2017, AFSA recognized 11 recipients, adding to the more FSO Gregory Aurit speaks about the benefits of studying in the United States to a group of Japanese high school students at Aoyama High School in Tokyo. Assistant Regional Security Officer for Investigations Kevin Gonzalez gives a presentation to Chinese local staff during Consular Leadership Day. Using the local language, in this case Mandarin, during a presentation helps to build a connection with the audience, resulting in effective delivery of the message. As an ARSO-I, conducting investigations in the local language helps build essential rapport with interviewees. than 300 members of the For- eign Service who have been honored since the award was established in 1982. Here we highlight seven of this year’s recipients as they use their language at post. AFSA is now accepting nominations for the 2018 Sinclaire Awards; nomination guidelines are available on the AFSAwebsite, sinclaire. n Jacob Glenn uses Hindi daily as he interviews visa applicants at the U.S. embassy in New Delhi. He also utilizes his language skills as he conducts visa outreach trips, like this one with students. Mariana L. Neisuler is the deputy economic counselor at U.S. Embassy Amman. In April 2017, Ms. Neisuler visited Jordan’s largest Syrian refugee camp, Za’atri, where she spoke in Arabic with many of those who have been displaced. Here Ms. Neisuler speaks with two 5-year-olds who have spent their whole lives in the camp. James Waterman is a consular officer in Tbilisi, Georgia. Here he discusses an American citizen services case using his Georgian language skills. Jacob Rocca (left) studied Japanese while serving in Pakistan. He is pictured at the Foreign Service Institute with FSI distance language mentor, Mariko Price (right). Brian Corteville is the consular chief at U.S. Embassy Pristina, a position which requires Albanian language skills. Here he enjoys a local restaurant cum bookstore. “Në këte fotografi, jam duke pirë një macchiato në restorantin tim të preferuar, Soma. E dije ti që Kosova ka macchiatot më të mira ne botë? Ashtu thuhet, të pakten këtu në Kosovë!”Translation: In this photo, I’m drinking a macchiato in my favorite restaurant, Soma. Did you know that Kosovo has the best macchiatos in the world? That’s what they say, at least here in Kosovo!