The Man Who Got Early RPCVs Jobs–Bob Calvert. His Obituary

calvert-robertBob Calvert was hired by Sargent Shriver in the early days of the agency to set up a Placement Office for RPCVs returning home. He was a wonderful man, low keyed with a great sense of humor. This office he created for the agency did not last, of course, and today as most newly returned PCVs quickly realize, the agency turns their back on RPCVs. It wasn’t so when Calvert was around.



Robert Calvert Jr., decorated WWII veteran, Peace Corps administrator, publisher-advocate for women and minorities, and beloved family man, died on June 11, 2015 at his home in Silver Spring, MD. He had been a long-time resident of Garrett Park. Bob was born December 23, 1922 in Santa Barbara, CA to Robert and Mary Calvert, the oldest of their three children, and raised in Scarsdale, NY. World War II was a defining experience in Bob’s life. He scored well on an Army entrance exam and was offered a safe assignment, but he turned it down, choosing to serve in the infantry in direct combat. He fought in the Battle of the Bulge as a rifle squad leader and platoon sergeant in an armored infantry company of the 4th Armored Division.

Wounded by German machine gun fire, he recovered in France in the final days of the war and joined the occupation army in Germany. He was a recipient of the Bronze Star, Purple Heart, Combat Infantry Badge, and Presidential Unit Citation. Bob returned to Oberlin College in 1946 where he met Janice Mills. After they graduated, they married and began a rich and rewarding life together that lasted nearly 60 years until her death in 2007.

Bob had a varied and prolific career. He left an early career in banking to pursue an EdD from Teachers College, Columbia University in 1952.

He became a college placement officer at the University of Illinois and Cal Berkeley. He joined the Peace Corps in 1963 where he created the Career Information Service for returning volunteers. In 1967, he was hired as one of the founding administrators of the University of District of Columbia (then, Federal City College). He subsequently joined the National Center for Educational Statistics and retired from the U.S. Department of Education in 1983. From a modest and accidental beginning, he created the Garrett Park Press, a small publishing company specializing in financial aid and job placement materials for women and minorities. He operated this company into his 80s. Bob’s interests in history and adventure inspired travel, and he moved to Riderwood in Silver Spring in 2007, which gave him more time to travel.

At Riderwood, he reconnected with former friend and Federal City College colleague, now, the Rev. Kathy Jordan. Bob and Kathy became great friends and traveled extensively together. In 2010, Bob completed his quest to visit all 3000 counties in the United States.

Bob is survived by four children and their spouses, Bruce and Mary Calvert of Lawrenceville, NJ; Betsy Calvert and Charles Taylor of Ware, MA; Cathie (Calvert) and George Miller of Garrett Park; and George and LeVerne Calvert of Ada, MI. He is also survived by nine grandchildren and a great-granddaughter.

A funeral service will be held at St. Luke’s Chapel, 7208 Main Street, Queenstown, MD on Saturday, June 27 at 3 p.m. Interment will occur at Arlington National Cemetery at a later date. Anyone wishing to make a memorial donation could consider the any of the following: United Church of Ware, 49 Church St, Ware, MA 01082; Circle Fellowship Church, 3110 Gracefield Rd, Silver Spring, MD 20904; or New York Avenue Church, 1313 New York Ave, NW, Washington, DC 20005. – See more at:

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  • We just found this, a year after our father’s death. Thanks for the recollection and the reprint and the insight. He stayed the same, all those years. That was a good thing.

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