Archive - October 2016

1
A small Peace Corps connection in the life of Tom Hayden who passed away on Sunday at age 76
2
Paul Theroux in The NY Times (Malawi)
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Sneak Preview
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The Peace Corps Office of Inspector General Receives Two Awards for Excellence
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Marjorie Michaelmore Peace Corps Postcard, Part VI (Nigeria)
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Marjorie Michaelmore Peace Corps Postcard, Part V (Nigeria)
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Ron Arias (Peru) launches THE WETBACK AND OTHER STORIES
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RPCV Food Aficionado & Author Dies in Nova Scotia
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RPCV & College President Kevin F.F. Quigley Talks Governance (Thailand)
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Musings in the Morning

A small Peace Corps connection in the life of Tom Hayden who passed away on Sunday at age 76

Tom Hayden, who played a key role in student activism of the ’60s and went on to play a role in higher education as a California legislator in the ’80s, died Sunday at the age of 76. While Hayden was one of the founders of Students for a Democratic Society, and was the chief author of the Port Huron Statement, which defined the goals of SDS and other activist groups of the ’60s to create a more just society in the United States. (and also known as one of Jane Fonda’s husbands), he also played a role in launching the Peace Corps. Harris Wofford points out in his book, Of Kennedys and Kings how Tom Hayden, editor of the Michigan Daily, was at the Student Union in Michigan when Kennedy spoke to the crowd of students and Wofford writes: “(Hayden) followed the development of the student organization with amazement. It had been an era in . . .

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Paul Theroux in The NY Times (Malawi)

  Pardon the American Taliban By PAUL THEROUX NY Times, OCT. 22, 2016 In the mid-1960s a young American teacher in a small central African country became involved with a group of political rebels — former government ministers mostly — who had been active in the struggle for independence. They had fallen out with the authoritarian prime minister, objecting to his dictatorial style. The country was newly independent, hardly a year old. The men advocated democratic elections and feared that the prime minister would declare himself leader for life in a one-party state. Fluent in the local language, obscure because he was a teacher in a bush school, and easily able to travel in and out of the country on his United States passport, the American performed various favors for the rebels, small rescues for their families, money transfers, and in one effort drove a car over 2,000 miles on back . . .

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Sneak Preview

Sensations, experiences and smells pour through my fingers onto the keyboard. Just back from a month in the U.S. – New York, Washington, D.C., Iowa, Wisconsin, California – I don’t know where to begin. To get a handle on it all, I write down some glimmers of my journey, a sneak preview of what’s to come: New York: Precious time with my son and his girlfriend Pablo Neruda’s face on the Barnes and Noble coffee shop mural An American kestrel alighting on rooftop terrace Nocturnal stroll along the Chelsea High Line   En route from NY to Washington: Warm welcome from girlfriend’s family Touching five states: New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland Independence Hall tower in the distance   Washington, D.C.: Award at the Peace Corps Connect Conference for my memoir “Marrying Santiago” Recalling fifty-year-old adventures with long lost Peace Corps friends With my son, his first view of . . .

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The Peace Corps Office of Inspector General Receives Two Awards for Excellence

Press Release from Peace Corps https://www.peacecorps.gov/news/library/peace-corps-office-inspector-general-receives-two-awards-excellence/   WASHINGTON, D.C., Oct. 21, 2016 – The Peace Corps Office of Inspector General (OIG) received two awards for excellence at the Council of the Inspectors General on Integrity and Efficiency’s (CIGIE) 19th Annual Awards Ceremony held on October 20, 2016. CIGIE presented the Award for Excellence in Audits to an OIG team for their “Audit of the Peace Corps’ Healthcare Benefits Administration Contract.” This audit examined how the Peace Corps, through its contractor, processes claims for medical services provided to its Volunteers. The audit team found serious flaws in the Peace Corps’ contracting practices and the contractor did not fully follow the terms in the contract. The audit found Peace Corps spent $1.2 million on services that couldn’t be verified by records. Expert Jeffrey Lee, Lead Auditor Snehal Nanavati, Auditor Ann Lawrence, Former Assistant Inspector General for Audits Bradley Grubb, Assistant Inspector General for . . .

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Marjorie Michaelmore Peace Corps Postcard, Part VI (Nigeria)

By now at Idlewild a half dozen more Peace Corps HQ people had arrived, all having been dispatched from D.C. These were some of the famous original staffers at the agency: Ruth Olson operated as crisis manager for the occasion. She was well versed for the job. She had come to the Peace Corps in the first week of the agency from years of working in the military during World War II; Betty Harris, a former journalist and political operative from Texas was on hand; Tom Matthews had just arrived back from Bermuda. And also arriving unannounced and unexpected, sneaking through the press of people, was Marjorie’s boyfriend from Boston, an  NAACP lawyer. It was here that Marjorie received her handwritten note from JFK. I don’t know how that was arranged, my guess it was done by Bill Moyers, the rising start of the next Johnson administration, and at age 27, the Associate Director for Public Affairs for . . .

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Marjorie Michaelmore Peace Corps Postcard, Part V (Nigeria)

Tim Adams arrived at Idlewild Airport to a terminal overwhelmed with press people carrying tape recorders, cameras, and microphones. Michelmore and Ware were about to touch down on a BOAC flight and Adams saddled up to a group of reporters and asked innocently, “Who’s coming in?” Adams thought it might be Grace Kelly, then due back in the States. “It’s that Peace Corps girl,” someone said and Tim’s heart dropped.   Slipping away from the reporters, Adams pulled out his official government Peace Corps ID and got past the customs officials and when the BOAC flight landed pulled Marjorie and Dick Ware into an empty room. The reporters, however, could see them on the other side of Customs, see Tim frantically telephoning Shriver at the Peace Corps Headquarters. Tim asked what he should do. Shriver told him, “Tim, I don’t want the press talking to Michelmore.”   Adams told Shriver . . .

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Ron Arias (Peru) launches THE WETBACK AND OTHER STORIES

  This is from today’s LaBloga:   The Wetback and Other Stories marks Ron Arias’ (Peru 1963-65) return to fiction after a career in non-fiction reporting from across the globe for People Magazine. The book brings together fourteen previously published stories, along with two new pieces. Arte Publico Press publishes The Wetback and Other Stories. Here’s a podcast of Arias discussing the collection https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/larb-radio-hour/id998390884?mt=2 • The Wetback and Other Stories Ron Arias (Peru 1963–65) Arte Publico Press September 2016 160 pages $17.95 (paperback)  

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RPCV Food Aficionado & Author Dies in Nova Scotia

  Dorothy Cann Hamilton, Founder of French Culinary Institute, Dies in Crash at 67 By Sam Roberts New York Times SEPT. 19, 2016 Dorothy Cann Hamilton (Thailand 1972-74) founded the French Culinary Institute in New York in 1984; it produced such famed graduates as Bobby Flay, Wylie Dufresne and Christina Tosi.   Dorothy Cann Hamilton, a food aficionado who started a vocational course that evolved into one of the world’s leading culinary schools, died on Friday on Cape Breton Island in Nova Scotia. She was 67. She died of injuries sustained in an automobile collision, said Bruce McCann, her cousin and the president of the International Culinary Center in California, the West Coast branch of the school that she founded in New York City in 1984 as the French Culinary Institute. She was the chief executive there. The police said her SUV and a truck hauling a camper collided. Ms. Hamilton, . . .

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RPCV & College President Kevin F.F. Quigley Talks Governance (Thailand)

The October 21, 2016 issue of The Chronicle of Higher Education has an edited excerpt of an interview that Kevin Quigley (Thailand 1976-79 & CD Thailand 2013-15) had recently with Chronicle’s Jack Stripling about the college’s unusual approach to decision making, i.e., the students have a major say in what is happening on campus and within the community of 400 students, faculty and staff.. You can watch the interview at: http://www.chronicle.com/article/Video-At-Marlboro-College/237894 Here is the transcript of the short video entitled: “At This College, Students Play a Large Role in Governance” Situated in the foothills of the Green Mountains of southern Vermont, Marlboro College is a small liberal-arts institution of only about 200 undergraduates. One of the college’s most distinctive features is the Town Meeting, a New England–style governance structure that gives everyone, from students to professors to custodial staff, a vote on decisions that range from changes in policy to . . .

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Musings in the Morning

I had a cab driver the other day here in Westchester who was a great Trump supporter. He was a white guy who had never been to college, never been in the army, never been in the Peace Corps, never, as far as I could see, done anything for his country. He said Trump would keep jobs in America. I asked him how Trump could keep him driving his taxi and he looked at me in the mirror and shook his head. He had no idea what I was saying. Well, I said, I just read where in Pittsburgh Uber had set up the first driverless taxicabs. The city will be losing over one thousand taxi-driving jobs because of it, once it was fully operational. Also, I read where self-driving vehicles would also replace about 20,000 truck drivers and another 10,000 bus drivers. Now the “drivers” could get ‘better paying’ . . .

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