The Foreign Service Journal, September 2017

THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL | SEPTEMBER 2017 79 AFSA NEWS Finally, in November 2016, the Foreign Affairs Manual was updated to include the new regulations for an assign- ment restriction appeals process. The presidents of AAFAA successfully advocated for language creating an appeals mechanism that ensures employees receive notifica- tion of the factual grounds for their assignment restric- tion, can address the security concerns and may request a second review. Collectively, they showed great dedication, patience and passion over the years, working respectfully within the system to get to a positive conclusion that will be benefi- cial to AAFAAmembers and other department employees. Accepting the award, each of the recipients acknowl- edged that there were many AAFAAmembers who had bravely stepped forward to tell their stories, even though it may have been unpopular to do so. Mr.Wong said that recogni- tion of the AAFAA presidents confirmed that “the voices of constructive dissent at any level, if spoken with dignity and respect, can resonate with department leaders, and can contribute toward making State a more diverse, more honorable, and more perfect organization.” Mariju Bofill joined the Foreign Service in 2004. Cur- rently posted to São Paulo, she has also served in Paris, Guayaquil, Matamoros and Athens. In 2011, she received the Department of State Equal Employment Opportu- nity Award for her leadership and commitment to promot- ing diversity. She is accom- panied in São Paulo by her husband and their two young children. Cecilia Choi serves as the director for trade and investment at the National Security Council. Her most recent overseas assignment was in Honduras, and she has also served in South Korea and Turkey. InWashington, D.C., Ms. Choi has served in the Bureau of Western Hemi- sphere Affairs and the Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs. Thomas Wong is an eco- nomic-coned officer assigned to the American Institute in Taiwan in Taipei. He previously served in Guadalajara and had consecutive tours inWash- ington, D.C., in the Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs. Prior to joining the Foreign Service in 2010, Mr. Wong served in the U.S. Army. His wife, Suzanne, is also a For- eign Service officer and the couple has two children. Christina T. Le serves as the special assistant to the assistant secretary of State for the Bureau of Intelligence and Research. She has previously served in Athens and Monterrey, as well as in Washington, D.C. n