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Board of Directors

Harold W. (Harry) Geisel

Ambassador Geisel is currently Acting Chairman of the Board of Directors of ADST. He spent 30 years in the Foreign Service in senior management roles at US embassies in Bern, Bamako, Rome, Bonn and Moscow.  He also served as Consul General in Durban South Africa.  In the Department, he was executive assistant to the Undersecretary for Management, Senior Negotiator for Burden Sharing, Acting Inspector General and Deputy Assistant Secretary for Information Management – Acting Chief Information Officer.  He was Ambassador to Mauritius, Seychelles and Comoros.

After retirement from the Foreign Service, he returned to the Department as Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary for Logistics Management.  He led a team that negotiated a Conditions of Construction Agreement with the Peoples Republic of China that led to the building of new embassies in Beijing and Washington.  In June, 2008, the Secretary appointed him as Acting Inspector General.  He served in that position, under three Secretaries of State until September 2013.  He has also been a long-time officer of the Board of Directors of the State Department Federal Credit Union.  He is the recipient of various awards from the Department of State including the Distinguished Honor Award.  He received a BA from Johns Hopkins University and an MBA from the University of Virginia.


John B. Bellinger, III

John B. Bellinger III is a partner in the international law and national security practices of Arnold & Porter LLP in Washington, DC. He is also an Adjunct Senior Fellow in International and National Security Law at the Council on Foreign Relations. Mr. Bellinger served as The Legal Adviser for the U.S. Department of State under Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice from 2005 to 2009. He previously managed Secretary Rice’s Senate confirmation and co-directed her State Department transition team. Mr. Bellinger served from 2001 to 2005 as Senior Associate Counsel to the President and Legal Adviser to the National Security Council at the White House, where he was Dr. Rice’s principal lawyer when she was National Security Adviser. He previously served as Counsel for National Security Matters in the Criminal Division of the Justice Department (1997-2001); Special Counsel to the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence (1996); and Special Assistant to Director of Central Intelligence William Webster (1988-1991). Mr. Bellinger received his A.B. from Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, his J.D. from Harvard Law School, and an M.A. in Foreign Affairs from the University of Virginia. Mr. Bellinger is a member of the Secretary of State’s Advisory Committee on International Law, the Council of the American Law Institute, and the Boards of Directors of the Stimson Center and the American Ditchley Foundation; one of four U.S. Members of the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague; and a member of the U.S. “National Group,” which nominates judges to the International Court of Justice. Mr. Bellinger testifies regularly before Congress and is the author of many articles and op-eds on international and national security law issues. He is a senior contributor to the Lawfare blog.


James A. Bever
James A. Bever has served for 35 years as a U.S. Foreign Service Officer with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). He retired with the U.S. Senior Foreign Service rank of Career Minister in mid-2017, after acting as USAID Assistant Administrator for Legislative & Public Affairs.
While with USAID, he served overseas as the Mission Director to Afghanistan, to Egypt, to the West Bank & Gaza Strip, and to Ghana, as well as in other responsibilities overseas in India, Indonesia and Pakistan. Senior leadership assignments at HQ in Washington, D.C., included assistant to the Administrator for Iraq and for Afghanistan and Pakistan; Senior Deputy Assistant Administrator for the Middle East; office director for U.S. foreign assistance for the New Independent Republics of the former Soviet Union, and as Faculty at the U.S. National War College and at the U.S. Foreign Service Institute.
Prior to USAID, he worked in Morocco, at SUNY Stonybrook/Brookhaven Laboratory, at the Overseas Development Council working in Sub-Saharan Africa, at the U.S. Embassy in Togo, and at the United Nations Secretariat.

Mr. Bever has a Master of Science Degree in Foreign Service from Georgetown University, a Master of Science Certificate in National Security Strategy from the National War College, and a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Economics from Cornell University. He is married and has two married sons and a grand-daughter.
Mr. Bever is a recipient of the U.S. Presidential Distinguished Service Award and the USAID Administrator Distinguished Career Service Award.


Donald M. Bishop

Donald M. Bishop was a Foreign Service Officer – first in the U.S. Information Agency and then in the Department of State – for 31 years. Specializing in Public Diplomacy, political-military affairs, and East Asia, he attained the rank of Minister-Counselor in the career service.

His first round of Foreign Service assignments were to Hong Kong; Taegu and Seoul, Korea; and Taipei, Taiwan. In Washington he was a Congressional Fellow, and he directed the training of the Foreign Service’s incoming Public Diplomacy officers. Returning overseas, he led U.S. Public Diplomacy programs in Bangladesh, Nigeria, and twice in China.

In 2006, Mr. Bishop was detailed to the Pentagon as the Foreign Policy Advisor (POLAD) to the Commandant of the Marine Corps and then to the Chief of Staff of the United States Air Force. Traveling with these two members of the JCS, he visited five continents and joined service planning to develop strong relationships with the armed forces of other nations.

At the request of Ambassador Richard Holbrooke, Mr. Bishop led communication and Public Diplomacy at the American Embassy in Afghanistan as the “civilian surge” began. In Kabul he helped develop the Afghan government’s relations with the media and the Embassy’s cooperation with the U.S. and NATO commands. Other portfolios included media relations, education and exchanges, English teaching, the preservation of cultural heritage sites, and the network of Lincoln Learning Centers throughout Afghanistan.

After his Foreign Service career concluded, Mr. Bishop worked for the Congressional-Executive Commission on China; served as President of the Public Diplomacy Council; and joined four rotations of Army brigades to the Joint Readiness Training Center at Fort Polk, LA, as a role player. He joined Marine Corps University as the Donald Bren Chair of Strategic Communications in 2016.

After graduation from Trinity College with a degree in history and an Air Force ROTC commission, he worked on Wall Street for Smith, Barney & Co. and Manufacturers Hanover Trust Company. Called to active duty, he served in Vietnam and Korea, and he taught history at the U.S. Air Force Academy. He was a member of the summer training cadre for the first Academy class that included women. His military awards included the Bronze Star Medal.


Lauri Fitz-Pegado

Fitz-Pegado is a recognized leader in providing consulting and strategic services to both domestic and international clients. She has represented over 20 countries and many corporations to support issues including normalizing diplomatic relations, lifting trade sanctions and facilitating investment.  Fitz-Pegado previously served as an Assistant Secretary of Commerce during President Clinton’s administration. She managed 130 offices overseas and 90 in the United States facilitating services to help small and medium sized companies export and advocating for major US companies competing for foreign contracts.

Lauri Fitz-Pegado is also a champion for development and the career advancement of women. A director on the DC board of the International Women’s Forum, she has served as a Corporate Ambassador for Vital Voices and is a member of the Women’s Foreign Policy Group. Ms. Fitz-Pegado provides advisory and mentoring services to several educational organizations including the University of Denver’s International Career Advancement Program at the Aspen Institute, the Ron Brown Scholars Program, the Jones-Haywood Dance School and the Woodrow Wilson Center’s Women in Public Service Project. She is on the board of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Vice Chair of the Board of Global Communities, and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Washington Government Relations Group.  Fitz-Pegado graduated cum laude with Phi Beta Kappa honors from Vassar College before earning her Master of Arts in International Affairs from the School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University.


Jerry W. Leach

Leach is an educator, author, speaker documentary filmmaker and Foreign Service Officer. He was a professor and director at the Prince Alwaleed Center for American and Global Affairs, American University in Cairo from 2006-11. He also served as National President of the World Affairs Councils of America from 1996-2006 and was the Peace Corps Regional Director for Eastern Europe, Soviet Republics, Middle East, Asia, and Pacific from 1989-93.  His degrees include: Ph.D. and M.A., Cambridge University; M.A. University of California at Berkeley; and B.A. Emory University. Dr. Leach has authored Presidential Directives and concluded several Executive Agreements for the State Department.  He was awarded the Emory Medal for Distinguished Public Service with his wife Marianne, as well as commendations from Presidents Reagan and George H.W. Bush and the State Department’s Superior Honor Award for blocking Soviet acquisition of militarily sensitive technology.



Ambassador Anne Patterson

Ambassador Patterson is currently a member of the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors of ADST. Patterson was the Assistant Secretary for Near Eastern and North African Affairs at the Department of State (2013-2017). She served as Ambassador to Egypt (2011-2013), to Pakistan (2007-2010), to Colombia (2000-2003) and to El Salvador (1997-2000). She recently retired with the rank of Career Ambassador after more than four decades in the Foreign Service.

Ambassador Patterson also served as Assistant Secretary of State for International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs and Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations, among other assignments. She is currently a senior fellow at the Jackson Institute for Global Affairs at Yale and a member of the Commission on National Defense Strategy.


Robin Raphel

Raphel has served for four decades in U.S. foreign policy agencies, including as Ambassador to Tunisia and Assistant Secretary of State for South Asia. She was the Senior Advisor for Pakistan, Coordinator for U.S. Development Assistance at the U.S. Embassy in Islamabad, Senior Advisor at the Ministry of Trade in Baghdad, Vice President of the National Defense University and Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction, among other assignments. Ambassador Raphel has also been a guest lecturer at the Harvard Kennedy School, University of Chicago and Johns Hopkins University. Educated at the University of Maryland, Cambridge and the University of Washington, she is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the American Academy of Diplomacy.


Peter R. Reams

A member of the Senior Foreign Service, Mr. Reams served in a wide range of policy and management positions in Washington and overseas through a career of nearly thirty years.  His early assignments included tours as political officer at the U.S. Mission to the European Communities in Brussels, where he had lead reporting responsibility for EC ministerial meetings and summits, and in London, where he again covered European Community issues, as well as Northern Ireland and US-UK cooperation against terrorism.  His domestic assignments included tours as a Secretariat Staff line officer, traveling in support of Secretary Kissinger and President Ford; country desk officer (United Kingdom, Northern Ireland, Ireland, Sweden, and Namibia); special assistant to the Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs; and career development officer in the Bureau of Personnel. His senior management responsibilities included service as deputy director for intermediate-range nuclear force and chemical weapon negotiations in the Office of Theater Military Policy in the Bureau of Politico-Military Affairs; director of the Office of Intelligence Liaison in the Bureau of Intelligence and Research; and deputy chief of mission in Antananarivo and Abidjan.   On his retirement in June 2000, Mr. Reams had just concluded three years as director of the Office of Caribbean Affairs and of the Haiti Working Group in the Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs.

After retirement, Mr. Reams served as a consultant to the Bureau of Human Resources, where he was responsible for bringing Foreign Affairs Manual provisions on mandatory retirement into conformance with the Foreign Service Act of 1980 and for codifying and implementing Secretary Powell’s criteria for the career ambassador selection process.  In recent years, Mr. Reams has conducted extensive research on the role of the Foreign Service and its leadership during World War II, drawing in part on the direct experiences of his parents, who both were U.S. delegation members at the 1945 Potsdam Conference and the 1946 Paris Peace Conference and who served on the immediate staffs of Secretaries of State James F. Byrnes and George C. Marshall.

Mr. Reams graduated from the University of Nevada in 1970 with a degree in political science and served as a U.S. Army Reserve officer from 1970 to 1978.


Virginia (Vicki) A. Weil

Weil joined The Business Council for International Understanding (BCIU) in 1996, establishing its first Washington office, and retired in 2013 as Senior Managing Director. She developed and chaired programs with U.S. and foreign government officials, focusing on issues and policies that confront American companies operating globally.   She designed and facilitated commercial training courses delivered within the State Department, at the National Foreign Affairs Training Center (Foreign Service Institute) and at regional meetings of the U.S. Commercial Service for all levels of Foreign Service officers. From 1995 to 1997, Ms. Weil was Assistant Vice President for Government Liaison in the Washington office of Edison Mission Energy, a subsidiary of Edison International and one of the largest global independent power producers.

From 1990-1995, Ms. Weil was a Senior Manager at Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu International, responsible for international government relations for the firm’s industry groups.  While at the firm, Ms. Weil designed and piloted commercial training for State Department officers, in conjunction with BCIU.

Ms. Weil previously served in the Finance Department of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) where she was responsible for all phases of project lending to U.S. private sector investors in emerging markets.  Prior to her work at OPIC, Ms. Weil was a financial analyst at Sears World Trade, Inc.

Ms. Weil earned an MBA in Finance from George Washington University and a BA in Political Science from Wheaton College, MA. She has served on the Board of Directors of the Prevent Cancer Foundation and as a member of the Board of Trustees of Wheaton College, MA.  She is member of the board of the Washington Institute of Foreign Affairs, the Preservation Foundation of the Metropolitan Club of Washington, and of BCIU.  She sits on the Foreign Affairs Council and the National Trust Council of the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

She has previously been a board member of Family and Child Services of Washington, D.C. and served on the advisory boards of the Center for International Business and Education and Research (CIBER) at Georgetown University and of OEF International, an organization that funded microenterprise assistance to women in developing countries.


Susan Rockwell Johnson

Johnson is a career member of the Senior Foreign Service with over three decades of distinguished service and serves as the President of ADST. She served in a broad range of bilateral and multilateral assignments in and out of the State Department including in Bosnia as Deputy High Representative and Supervisor of Brcko District, in the Coalition Provisional Authority in Baghdad as the Senior Advisor to the Iraqi Foreign Ministry, as Deputy Chief of Mission and Charge d’affaires in Romania and Mauritius, IESC Director for Central Asia based in Kazakhstan, as well as in Russia, Cuba, Pakistan, the United States Mission to the United Nations, several assignments in the State Department, on the Hill and with the National Endowment for Democracy. As the elected President of the American Foreign Service Association (AFSA) from 2009 to 2013, Ms. Johnson focused on the Foreign Service labor-management issues key to the Foreign Service. Following her two terms as AFSA President, Ms Johnson was detailed to the American Academy of Diplomacy as a Senior Advisor to provide her expertise and work on the Academy’s recently released report “American Diplomacy at Risk”. She joined ADST in November, 2016.

Prior to entering the Foreign Service, Ms. Johnson worked in the private sector in the areas of strategic planning, international marketing and joint venture negotiation. She has a B.A. in History (Summa cum Laude) from Principia College and an M.A. in International Relations from the Johns Hopkins School of International Studies (SAIS). She is married to Ambassador Riaz M Khan, retired Pakistani diplomat and former Foreign Secretary of Pakistan. She serves on the Boards of the Diplomacy Center Foundation, DACOR and the Chestnut Hill Benevolent Association in Boston, Massachusetts.


Honorary Board

Hillary Clinton
Condoleezza Rice
Colin L. Powell
Madeleine K. Albright
James A. Baker III
George P. Shultz
Henry A. Kissinger


Ex Officio

American Academy of Diplomacy – Ronald E. Neumann
AAFSW – Joanna Athanasopoulos
Assoc. of Black American Ambassadors – Edward Perkins
AFSA – Eric Rubin
Council of American Ambassadors – Timothy Chorba
DACOR – Paul Denig
Senior Seminar Association – Michael Lekson
UAA – Carol Peasley
Una Chapman Cox Foundation – Lino Gutierrez


Former Board Chairs

G. Phillip Hughes, 2015-2019
James T.L. Dandridge II, 2005-2015
Patricia Gates Lynch Ewell, 1998-2005
Herbert J. Hansell, 1992-1998