Thursday, February 26, 2009

Insider Quote: The Leadership Gap Where?

A number of very distinguished professional diplomats have been director general, plus some time-serving mediocrities. While in the Foreign Service, I was privileged to know a few of the better incumbents, but even they did not play a true leadership role in the Service nor enjoyed much recognition among the ranks of embassy and State Department staffs. The stature of the director general's office has sadly declined over many years. It is certainly not the job to which the best of the Foreign Service aspire.

Foreign Service leadership gap? E. Wayne Merry The Washington Times, February 26, 2009

E. Wayne Merry was a career Foreign Service Officer and is now a senior associate at the American Foreign Policy Council in Washington, D.C.

The last five Directors General of the Foreign Service are below. Click here for the full list of Directors General.


jc said...

Harry Thomas is someone who was deeply respected by the staff that worked for him in his last two posts (Ambassador to Bangladesh and Executive Secretary). I would say that he was considered a strong leader.

On the other hand, he has faced some considerable challenges as DG.

DS said...


Thanks for your comment. The DG's challenge, I think it will only expand exponentially in the days and years ahead, just because of the realities in the world.