Profile in Citizenship

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The Volunteer Who Was Named One of Most Powerful Women on Wall Street — Patricia Cloherty (Brazil)
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The Volunteer Who Found Himself through a Garden of Remembrance
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The Volunteer who photographed the Summer of Love & then went on to slake a great thirst — Bill Owens (Jamaica)
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The Volunteer who went on to be a leading Congressional Representative — John Garamendi (Ethiopia)
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The Volunteer Who Is one of the Most Prolific Writers of our Era — Larry Grobel (Ghana)
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The Volunteer Who Codified the “Ten Stages of Genocide” — Gregory Stanton (Ivory Coast)
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The Volunteer Who Brought China Home to America — Peter Hessler (China)
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The Volunteer Who Went on to Become the Solicitor General of the United States — Drew Day (Honduras)
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The Volunteer Who Initiated Critical National Discussions — Charles Murray (Thailand)
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The Volunteer Who is One of the Most Thought-provoking Analysts of Our Time — George Packer (Togo)
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The Volunteer Who Lived Peace Corps’ 3rd Goal — Dennis Grubb (Colombia)
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The Volunteer Who Became the Co-founder and CEO of Netflix — Reed Hastings (Swaziland)
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The Volunteer Who as a Superior Court Judge Threw Out California’s Lethal Injection Procedure — Faye Hooker D’Opal (Colombia)
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The Volunteer Who Built a Railroad to the Sky — Jay Hersch (Colombia)
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The Volunteer Who Was Nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize — Chic Dambach (Colombia)

The Volunteer Who Was Named One of Most Powerful Women on Wall Street — Patricia Cloherty (Brazil)

  by Jeremiah Norris (Colombia 1963-65) (A cautionary note to readers: a significant portion of Patricia Cloherty’s professional career involved her firm’s investments in Russia at a time when it was a viable member of the Community Nations. That status has been tabled since its February, 2022 unprovoked invasion of Ukraine). • Patricia Cloherty earned a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of San Francisco, followed by two MAs from Columbia University. After hergraduation, she became a Peace Corps Volunteer in Brazil from 1963 to 1965. She began her career in venture capital at Patricof & Co. in New York, which she joined in 1969. She was named a partner and later would become resident and co-chair of the firm, along with founder Alan Patricof. After she left the firm, Patricof & Co. (now known as Apax Partners), became one of the largest private equity firms globally. In an interview with . . .

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The Volunteer Who Found Himself through a Garden of Remembrance

  by Jeremiah Norris (Colombia 1963-65) (This Profile is drawn from a sensitive and warm-hearted book review by Donald Dimberger, Eastern Caribbean/Antigua, 1977-78 of Every Day Since Desenzano: A Tale of Gratitude, by Patrick Logan, Thailand, 1984-86. • In the popular film It’s a Wonderful Life, George Bailey longs to hear the sounds of “anchor chains, plane motors, and train whistles.” Patrick Logan also longed to hear them. However, to his father they meant separation from the things he held dear. He fought in Italy during WW II and survived through luck and by writing letters almost daily to the woman he’d married just before shipping out. In contrast, his younger son, Patrick, sought overseas adventure, initially as a Peace Corp Volunteer in Thailand. Then, following his father’s death, Patrick inherited those wartime letters, and in them, he learned much about the man from whom he’d grown distant, emotionally at . . .

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The Volunteer who photographed the Summer of Love & then went on to slake a great thirst — Bill Owens (Jamaica)

  A Profile in Citizenship by Jeremiah Norris (Colombia 1963–65) •   (This Profile of Bill Owens, Jamaica 1964-65, was largely drawn from in interview conducted by Tony D’Souza, Ivory Coast 2000-02 and Madagascar 2002-2003.)   Early on in his career, Bill took iconic photos of the Hells Angels beating concertgoers with pool cue sticks at the Rolling Stones’ performance during the Altamont Speedway Festival in California four months after Woodstock on December 8, 1969. Altamont is considered by historians as the end of the Summer of Love and the overall 1960s youth ethos. Bill was so fearful of retribution by the Hells Angels that he published the photos from the festival under a pseudonym fearing they would “come and murder’ him. Some of the negatives were later stolen, he believed by the Hells Angels.   In 1964, Bill joined the Peace Corps and was assigned to teach high school in . . .

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The Volunteer who went on to be a leading Congressional Representative — John Garamendi (Ethiopia)

  A Profile in Citizenship by Jeremiah Norris (Colombia 1963-65) • In the early 1960s, John Garamendi earned a B. A. in Business from the University of California, and then an MBA from Harvard Business School. Afterwards, he served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Ethiopia from 1966 to 1968. In 1974, John was elected to the California State Assembly, serving a single term before moving on to being elected in 1976 to the California State Senate. Here, he served four terms until 1990, including a spell as Majority Leader. While in the Senate, John chaired the Joint Committee on Science and Technology, the Senate Health and Welfare Committee, and the Senate Revenue and Taxation Committee. He first ran for Governor of California in 1982, losing to the very popular Los Angeles Mayor Tom Bradley. In 1990, John became the first elected California Insurance Commissioner, serving from 1991 to 1995. . . .

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The Volunteer Who Is one of the Most Prolific Writers of our Era — Larry Grobel (Ghana)

A Profile in Citizenship by Jeremiah Norris (Colombia 1963–65) • (This Profile is with appreciation to John Coyne for his recent informative interview with Lawrence [Larry] Grobel.) After graduating from UCLA, Larry was a Volunteer in Ghana 1968 to 1971. He worked in Ghana’s Institute of Journalism, teaching Literature, Creative Writing, and Current Events. In the next 36 years, Lawrence managed — somehow, to write two novels; 3 books of short stories; 2 novellas; 2 memories; a book of poems about celebrities; 2 volumes of 4 screen plays; 8 “conversations with” books; a satire on yoga; and 10 books of nonfiction! Within this literary output, Larry squeezed in interviews with international celebrities, creating in the process a veritable rogues’ gallery of contemporary icons.  One was with Marlon Brando for Playboy’s 25th Anniversary issue. Playboy called him “the interviewer’s interviewer.” Another for Playboy was with Truman Capote, that subsequently was turned . . .

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The Volunteer Who Codified the “Ten Stages of Genocide” — Gregory Stanton (Ivory Coast)

   by Jeremiah Norris (Colombia, 1963-65) • From 1969 to 1971 Gregory H. Stanton served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in the Ivory Coast. From there, he went on to be the Church World Service/CARE’s Field Director in Cambodia. From 1985 to 1991, Gregory was a Professor of Law at Washington and Lee University, and a Fulbright Professor at the University of Swaziland. In this time period, he also was a Professor of Justice, Law, and Society at the University of Mary Washington in Fredericksburg, Virginia. Gregory was the Chair of the American Bar Association’s Young Lawyer’s Division Committee on Human Rights and a Member of its Standing Committee on World Order, serving as Legal Advisor to the Ukrainian Independence Movement from 1988-1992. He was named the Ukrainian Man of the Year in 1992 by the UI Movement. In 1991, he founded the Cambodian Genocide Project at Yale University, initiating . . .

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The Volunteer Who Brought China Home to America — Peter Hessler (China)

   by Jeremiah Norris  (Colombia, 1963-65) Peter Hessler graduated from Princeton University in 1992 with an A. B. in English. The summer before graduation, he wrote an extensive ethnography about the small town of Sikeston, Missouri, which was published by the Journal for Applied Anthropology. After graduation, he received a Rhodes Scholarship to study English language and literature at Mansfield College, University of Oxford. Peter then served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in China from 1996 to 1998, teaching English at Fuling Teachers College, in a small city near the Yangtze River. After Peace Corps, Peter continued his work in China as a freelance writer for publications such as The Wall Street Journal, The Boston Globe, The South China Morning Post, and National Geographic. He joined The New Yorker as a staff writer in 2000 and served as a foreign correspondent until 2007. Peter left China in 2007 and settled . . .

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The Volunteer Who Went on to Become the Solicitor General of the United States — Drew Day (Honduras)

   by Jeremiah Norris  (Colombia, 1963-65) • After graduation from Hamilton College cum laude in 1963, with an A. B. in English literature, Drew S. Days III, inspired by the civil rights leaders of that time, then went on to earn a law degree from Yale in 1966. He briefly practiced law in Chicago before serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Honduras from 1967 to 1969. Returning to the U. S. in 1969, Drew became the first assistant counsel at the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund in New York City. He worked there for eight years, litigating a range of civil rights cases. He was admitted to practice law before the United States Supreme Court, and in the states of Illinois and New York. In 1977, then-President Jimmy Carter nominated Drew to serve as the Assistant General for Civil Rights in the Department of Justice. His tenure was . . .

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The Volunteer Who Initiated Critical National Discussions — Charles Murray (Thailand)

by Jeremiah Norris (Colombia 1963-65) • Charles Murray served as a Peace Corp Volunteer in Thailand, beginning in 1965, then stayed abroad for six years. He credits his time in Peace Corps with his lifelong interest in Asia. His tenure with the Peace Corps ended in 1968. Recalling his time in Thailand, in 2014 Charles noted that his worldview was fundamentally shaped by his time there. He went on to comment: . . . most of what you read in my books I learned in Thai villages. I was struck first by the enormous discrepancy between what Bangkok thought was important to the villagers and what the villagers wanted out of government. Secondly, when the government change agent showed up, the village went to hell in terms of its internal governance. His work in Peace Corps and subsequent research in Thailand for research firms associated with the U. S. Government led . . .

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The Volunteer Who is One of the Most Thought-provoking Analysts of Our Time — George Packer (Togo)

 by Jeremiah Norris  (Colombia, 1963-65)   Since serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Togo, 1982-83, George Packer went on to write for The Atlantic Monthly where he wrote the article “We Are Living in a Failed State,” and two books: Our Man: Richard Holbrooke and the End of the American Century, and Last Best Hope: America in Decline and Renewal, both reviewed below. Taken together, the overriding themes constituted a refrain to Mark Twain’s famous comment: “the reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated”. Our Man: Richard Holbrooke and the End of the American Century George Packer has a thoroughly beguiling style of writing in which the reader is being told a story rather than reading one, as with the opening line in Moby Dick: “Call me Ishmael.” With George in Our Man “you have heard that he [Holbrooke] is a monstrous egotist. It’s true. It’s even worse . . .

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The Volunteer Who Lived Peace Corps’ 3rd Goal — Dennis Grubb (Colombia)

  by Jeremiah Norris (Colombia 1963-65) Dennis Grubb was an Eagle Scout when he joined the Peace Corps as a Volunteer in 1961, going on to write the first chapter of its history. He was the youngest Volunteer in one of the first groups ever to be sent abroad, serving in Colombia. He worked in a rural village at the 8,700 elevation of the Andean mountains, a place with no running water or sewers, scant access to electricity, and few paved roads. Illiteracy, malnutrition, dysentery, and TB were rampant. Along with Peace Corps colleagues, Dennis formed a liaison between his village and government officials and secured assistance to build the first cooperative food store, a small medical center, three schools, roads, and a water supply pipeline. Dennis worked with Colombians at all levels, from farmers to national officials to achieve his overall goal which was to convince the community that . . .

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The Volunteer Who Became the Co-founder and CEO of Netflix — Reed Hastings (Swaziland)

A Profile in Citizenship by Jeremiah Norris (Colombia 1963–65)   In Reed Hastings gap year before college he sold vacuum cleaners door to door, then went on to graduate from Bowdoin College with a degree in Mathematics. He spent his college summers in a Marine Corps training program, including a stint at the Officers Candidate School in the summer of 1981. He was never commissioned, choosing instead to become a Peace Corps Volunteer. He went to teach math at a high school of 800 in rural Swaziland, Africa, from 1983-85.  Reed credits part of his entrepreneurial spirit to his time in Peace Corps, remarking that “Once you have hitch-hiked across Africa with ten bucks in your pocket, starting a business doesn’t seem too intimidating”. After returning from Peace Corps, Reed went on to attend Stanford University, earning a Master’s in Computer Science. His first job was at Adaptive Technology where . . .

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The Volunteer Who as a Superior Court Judge Threw Out California’s Lethal Injection Procedure — Faye Hooker D’Opal (Colombia)

  Faye Hooker D’Opal earned a bachelor’s degree from Hendrix College in Arkansas and a Doctorate in Jurisprudence from New College of California, San Francisco. Faye commented that a motivating factor in deciding to earn a law degree was based on her earlier experience of racial discrimination while growing up in rural Arkansas. This is where her legacy of community service began where she participated in the historic efforts to desegregate Little Rock’s public schools. Peace Corps In 1963–65, she became a Peace Corps Volunteer in Colombia, one among the first women to serve in that capacity. In her first year, she worked in health/community development programs, based in a local health center serving an area of 9,000 people. Its primary goal was to develop an extensive program in preventive medicine. Faye also participated in various development activities in four other nearby communities. She and her colleagues were successful in . . .

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The Volunteer Who Built a Railroad to the Sky — Jay Hersch (Colombia)

  A Profile in Citizenship by Jeremiah Norris (Colombia 1963–65)   Back story: Imagine the improbable After serving in Colombia, 1964-66, RPCV Jay Hersch buys a farm in the Western Highlands of Virginia, starts a successful business, then fulfills a long-held dream: he lays down a road bed for 155 feet of track, builds a replica of an existing Train Station, finds a surplus caboose and coal car — and from dream to reality, creates a railroad on his property! Jay’s published book, Phantomrail: The Railroad that Never Was, available on Amazon, tells the complete story.   Since his boyhood days in Chicago, Jay remembers waiting with his grandfather at the end of the Kenzie Avenue line, fascinated as he watched rail workers push the streetcar around the turnstile until it was headed back toward downtown. He also recalled counting the cars as the freight trains rumbled past and last . . .

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The Volunteer Who Was Nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize — Chic Dambach (Colombia)

  A Profile in Citizenship by Jeremiah Norris (Colombia 1963–65)   How does one write about the career of Charles “Chic” Dambach –and still do justice to it in 1.5 pages! Let me try, though my effort may prove to be a poor candle in bringing it to light. Chic, to his global friends and associates, began his journey after graduating from Oklahoma State University in 1967, which he attended on a football scholarship as an outstanding college prospect. According to a review of his memoir Exhaust the Limits, the Life and Times of a Global Peacebuilder by another Volunteer, Bob Arias, Chic came upon racism on the playing fields of his school — and met it head on. It just wasn’t another game for Chic, fighting racist attitudes was his first challenge and he reached out to make a difference, an attitude that infused his professional life thereafter. Chic . . .

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