The Foreign Service Journal, November 2019

THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL | NOVEMBER 2019 95 AFSA NEWS What’s New at DACOR? As its historic redbrick federal mansion at 1801 F Street in northwest Washington, D.C., nears its 200th anniversary, DACOR—which was founded in 1952—has embarked on a journey of renewal. The organization has new leadership, a new execu- tive director and a renewed commitment to its mission: promoting diplomacy, sup- porting the Foreign Service and bringing together the larger foreign affairs com- munity. DACOR, whose members number 1,700 worldwide, is dedicated to bringing foreign affairs professionals together in support of the Foreign Service, to enhance public understanding of diplomacy and to preserve the historic DACOR Bacon House as a meeting place for frank and constructive dialogue about international events and diplomacy. DACOR’s ongoing part- nership with AFSA includes events such as hosting the celebratory lunches for the DACOR President Paul Denig DACOR FS Retiree Outreach and a Return to Chautauqua A key part of every AFSA president’s outreach is regu- lar meetings with the many Foreign Service retiree asso- ciations across the country. Our retiree members are engaged and energetic, often playing a key role in amplify- ing AFSA messaging nation- wide and taking a lead role in calls to action on advocacy issues. On Sept. 17, AFSA Presi- dent Eric Rubin met with the Foreign Affairs Retirees of Maryland and the District of Columbia. Joining the group for lunch and a presentation at the Five Star Premier Resi- dences in Chevy Chase, Md., President Rubin discussed AFSA priorities and recent advocacy issues, the role of outreach in AFSA’s strategy and the importance of retain- ing one’s AFSA membership in retirement. The crowd was lively and asked a number of incisive questions, touching on the status of the USAID reorga- nization, the role of the State Department’s Office of the Inspector General, and how President Rubin sees the engagement of new officers. AFSA appreciates the leadership of F. Allen “Tex” Harris in this association and is grateful for the invitation. The opportunity to meet with members in this way is invaluable to AFSA, and we encourage all Foreign Service retiree associations to provide a platform for the AFSA presi- dent when possible. Please contact Chris- tine Miele at miele@ . President Rubin’s next meeting with retirees is with the Foreign Affairs Retirees of Northern Virginia (FARNOVA) on Nov. 19, and there are plans to meet with the Florida retiree associa- tion in early 2020. Elsewhere, AFSA returned to the Chautauqua Institu- tion in western New York in September for a second time this year, to offer a Road Scholar program focused on the Foreign Service and diplomacy. More than 120 partici- pants attended from all over the country and had the opportunity to hear from six retired senior FSOs: James Benson, James Bever, Lynne Platt, Philip Shull and Ambas- sador John Dinger. Platt, AFSA’s senior adviser for strategic commu- nications, gave talks about U.S.-Canada relations as well as the benefits the Foreign Service brings to our citizens back home, while AFSA Manager for Outreach Allan Saunders gave a primer on the Foreign Service. The Chautauqua pro- grams are an important part of AFSA’s educational out- reach efforts, as they have a high profile and attract large audiences. We have worked with Chautauqua since 1996 and greatly value this long- standing collaboration. n AFSA Senior Adviser for Strategic Communications Lynne Platt speaks at the Chautauqua Institution in western New York. Continued on p. 96