Vote for The i-AFSA CoalitionThe Team
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President: Bob Silverman [email protected]

Bob is a Senior Foreign Service Officer with 24 years of experience, 18 overseas and six in the Department. His overseas tours include DCM Stockholm, political counselor Tel Aviv, economic counselor Riyadh and Baku, deputy economic counselor Ankara, political officer Cairo and Jerusalem, as well as PRT team leader in Tikrit, Iraq.

State Vice President: Greg Hicks [email protected]

In the course of a 22-year career at the Department of State, Greg Hicks has served in six overseas assignments in Libya, Afghanistan, Bahrain, Yemen, Syria, and The Gambia. He was Deputy Chief of Mission of U.S. Embassy Tripoli during the September 11, 2012 tragedy in Benghazi.

Retiree Vice President: Larry E. Cohen [email protected]

Following a twenty-seven year career with the Department of State, Larry Cohen established his own consulting firm, Lawrence Cohen Associates, Inc., in 2007. In his Foreign Service Career, Larry was posted to Mexico when that country’s first debt crisis hit, Honduras during the regional upheaval of the 1980s, India during three changes of government, Hungary just after the fall of Communism, Nigeria with the return of democracy, Brazil with the climactic ascension of the Labor Party to power, and with Provincial Reconstruction Teams in Bamiyan and Herat, Afghanistan.

Secretary: Robert F. Ritchie [email protected]

Robert’s career in government spans nearly 35 years, covering service overseas; first with USAID as a Program Development Office, then an Executive Officer; later as a USAID Country Representative. His duties consisted of designing, managing and directing American bilateral assistance programs in Asia, Latin American, and Africa.

Treasurer: Ambassador Charles A. Ford [email protected]

On March 5, 2012, Charles A. Ford was named Acting Assistant Secretary/Director General, United States and Foreign Commercial Service (USFCS) in the Commerce Department’s International Trade Administration. He serves as the chief executive officer of the US government’s premier export promotion agency leading its domestic and overseas trade offices. In October 2010, former Ambassador Ford was appointed Deputy Director General of the USFCS, its most senior career position.

State Rep: Clayton Bond [email protected]

An alumnus of the Thomas R. Pickering Graduate Foreign Affairs Fellowship program, Clayton Bond entered the Foreign Service on September 10, 2001. He is currently a mid-level, Management cone officer in the Bureau of African Affairs. Besides two previous assignments in Washington, DC, Clayton has served in Colombia, India, Singapore, and Indonesia.

State Rep: Kenneth Kero-Mentz [email protected]

Kenneth Kero-Mentz joined the U.S. Department of State in January 2000 and did his consular tour in Rio de Janeiro before returning to Washington where he covered Greece and Turkey issues. In January 2004, Ken volunteered to serve Baghdad where he was tasked with rebuilding the Iraqi National Assembly building and laying the groundwork for the Assembly’s secretariat.

State Rep: Michael D. Thomas [email protected]

Michael Thomas has been a Foreign Service Officer for 22 years, serving in Guyana, Portugal, Laos, India, and again in Guyana as Deputy Chief of Mission. A consular-cone officer, he is currently Director of CA/PPT/SIA, an organization with over 100 staff who support 150 departments and agencies in all three branches of government and maintain liaison relationships with 140 foreign embassies in Washington, DC.

State Rep: Nancy Rios-Brooks [email protected]

Nancy Rios-Brooks grew-up in Puerto Rico and moved to the U.S. in 1985. She joined the Foreign Service in 2001 and became a General Services Officer. Since then, Nancy has served in San Salvador, Nicaragua, Lima, Sao Paulo, Luanda, Bangui, Ouagadougou, and Malabo. Currently, she is working for the Travel Management and Transportation Analysis Branch in Washington D.C.

State Rep: Chuck Fee [email protected]

Chuck Fee is an active duty Foreign Service Generalist who joined in 2010 as an Economic Officer. The Department of State is his second career. Before joining the Foreign Service he worked in information technology and I.T. security. From 2006 to 2010 he worked for USAID’s regional office at Embassy Bangkok as Computer Systems Manager.

State Rep: Lilly Wahl-Tuco [email protected]

Lilly joined the Department of State in 2006 as a consular-coned Foreign Service Officer. She has served tours in Paris, Skopje, on a bridge assignment as Iceland/Denmark desk, and currently serves as the Czech Republic desk officer in EUR/CE.

State Rep: Everett "Alex" Copher [email protected]

During a 24-year career with the Foreign Service, Everett "Alex" Copher served at nine consecutive hardship assignments, in Ghana, Paraguay, Kazakhstan, Colombia, Malawi, Nepal, Burma, Armenia, and Guyana. In six of these assignments Alex served as the Information Management Officer with stints as an acting Management Officer. Additionally, Alex performed Temporary Duty Assignments in Sierra Leon, Togo, Argentina, and Kyrgyzstan.

State Rep: Todd Crawford [email protected]

Prior to joining the Foreign Service in 2010, Todd taught Constitutional Law and English for two years at a law school in Chongqing, China as a Peace Corps volunteer. Originally from Portland, Oregon, Todd earned his law degree from Boston University, where he produced the annual comedy revue and edited the Law Review. Currently on the Benelux Desk, Todd began his Foreign Service career with a consular tour in Yemen. His interest in international affairs stems not only from his deep curiosity about the world and its people, but from an abiding faith that we can always do better, and a deep-seated commitment to endeavor to make it so.

State Rep: David Zwach [email protected]

David Zwach is currently a State Representative on the AFSA governing board. David has been a Security Engineering Officer since 1987. He is currently Operations Chief in the Technical Security and Countermeasures Branch. He previously served as Chief of the Information Assurance Branch (DS/SECD/IAB) at the Diplomatic Security Training Center, where Dave created the only classroom-led USG Center of Excellence for role-based Cybersecurity training. Dave also served as the Officer-in-Charge at the Engineering Services Center, US Embassy Abu Dhabi, and the Branch Chief for the Field Support Branch and Quality and Liaison Branch. Dave created the QAL Branch in 2001.

Retiree Rep: Stephen Keat [email protected]

Stephen Keat recently retired from the Foreign Service after 29 years. He served in six overseas assignments: The Dominican Republic; Somalia; Kenya; Spain; The Philippines; and Uruguay. Stephen has also served a number of D.C. tours, mostly in the Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs and the Bureau of Intelligence and Research. Stephen played a key role in negotiating OECD agreements on environmental and social guidelines for Export Credit Agencies (ECAs), Aircraft Finance, Tied Aid Transparency, and worked to strengthen ECA efforts to curb bribery.

Retiree Rep: Barry I Friedman [email protected]

Barry I Friedman is Senior Director for Albright Stonebridge Group. Bringing 30 years of business and government experience and residence in China and Asia, he focuses on developing strategic approaches and solutions for companies in the group’s China Practice.

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