Inspirational Informal Award Lunch

On November 6, the AAFSW Board hosted an informal lunch to welcome and honor the 2017 SOSA, Tragen, CCE-EFM and Dorman Award winners. The occasion allowed AAFSW Board members to meet the awardees in a relaxed atmosphere and hear about their award-winning work.

We were glad to meet Grace Anne Turner, SOSA winner for the Bureau of African Affairs who traveled from Dakar, Senegal; Craig Houston, SOSA winner for the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs who arrived that morning from Chiang Mai, Thailand; Maritza Wilson, SOSA winner for the Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs and her husband Philip Wilson, who traveled from Managua, Nicaragua; and Alesia Krupenikava, SOSA winner for the Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs and her husband William O’Bryan, who recently moved from Kiev, Ukraine and currently live in Virginia. (Lisa A. Hess, SOSA winner for the Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs, was unable to travel to the U.S.) During the lunch, we had the opportunity to learn more about the SOSA winners’ incredible volunteer work at post and what motivated them to do it.

We also had the opportunity to meet and honor Judy Ikels, winner of the Champions of Career Enhancement for EFMs (CCE-EFM) Award, Anna Dworken, winner of the Lesley Dorman Award, and Kelly Bembry Midura, winner of the Eleanor Dodson Tragen Award. These three awardees were honored for extraordinary service to the Foreign Service community, particularly Eligible Family Members (EFMs).

It was an inspirational afternoon, full of amazing stories about the extraordinary work, passion and creativity of this year‘s winners, all of them valuable members of the Foreign Service community.

It was a privilege to meet them all.

Yolanda Macias-Cottrell
SOSA Chair