Pick The Next Peace Corps Director!

The presidential election is a toss up. But what about the next Director of the Peace Corps? It is doubtful that Aaron Williams will stay into a second Obama Administration. (Peace Corps Directors rarely last more than a couple years in the job and it is mostlikely, Aaron will finish off his government career as an Ambassador. If Obama loses, Aaron will certainly get that appointment before the end of the year.)

If Romney wins we are looking at a Republican appointment. Either way, come November, we are in for a change of leadership at the agency.

I think we might have (finally) established the fact that the Peace Corps MUST be an RPCV.

So, who should he/she be?

Here are a few RPCV names to consider for next director of the Peace Corps.  Send in your candidate!

John Garamendi, California Congressmen (Ethiopia 1966-68)
Thomas Tighe, President and CEO, Direct Relief International (Thailand 1986-88)
Nancy Kelly, Executive Director, Health Volunteers Overseas (Korea 1979-81)
Jonathan Lash, President of World Resources Institute (Dominican Republic 1967-69)
Cathy Woolard, (CARE) (Micronesia 1980-81)
Michael McCaskey, Former CEO Chicago Bears (Ethiopia 1965-67)
Christopher Shays, Former Republican U.S. Representative from Connecticut (Fiji 1968-70)
Maureen Orth, Journalist (Columbia 1964-66)
Denny Robertson, USAID development counselor (Philippines 1977-79)
Kathleen Stephens,  Former Ambassador to South Korea (Soputh Korea 1975-77)
Chris Matthews, MSNBC HardBall Host (Swaziland 1968-70)

3 Comments

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  • “I think we might have (finally) established the fact that the Peace Corps MUST be an RPCV.”

    I disagree. I do not think that the Peace Corps Community has the kind of power to make sure that the next PC Director is a RPCV. And if the Republicans win and decide on an RPCV, my money would be on Libertarian “Charles A. Murray, of “Coming Apart.” I believe Murray would stop “all this nonsense” about cross-cultural understanding and focus on imparting upper class values to everyone.

    If Obama wins, then I think it less likely that an RPCV would be Director. In my humble opinion, the most powerful person I have had occasion to speak with in the current agency is, Sarah E. Morgenthau, Director Of Peace Corps Response, the program expanding rapidly to include non-RPCVs among its “Response Volunteers.” She is a DC lawyer from Obama’s “Organizing for America.” Even though, Director Williams said that he would change the Peace Corps Response webpage to reflect, up front, that
    work with intelligence gathering agencies would remain a barrier to participating in the Peace Corps Response program; the web page was never changed. That prohibition is stated within the application process, but those just scrolling the site would never see it.
    To me, that is power.

    If the Five Year Rule is changed substantially, then those 30 political appointments would be real gems and a way for the next administration to really control Peace Corps for years.

  • An RPCV would be preferable, but practically speaking can never be a requirement.

    A great option for PCD would be John Chromy (RPCV, staff in three different decades, including CD & Associate Director, Vice President of Special Olympics, Vice President of CHF, Int’l.). Great management and communications skills. A true “idea” person who could get attention in the media, in the Administration and on Capital Hill.

  • Ken,

    I would be interested in knowing why you think that “practically speaking, one (an RPCV) can never be a requirement.” The legislation that created the Five Year Rule could also have made successful service as a RPCv a prerequisite for Peace Corps employment. It would have required the consent of the Civil Service Commission, but it would have been absolutely consistent with the Textor memo and evidently the expectations of the Shriver staff.

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