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State Department Official to
Discuss Reform Era in Poland

Posted September 12, 2000

HOLLAND -- Paul Wackerbarth, a career Foreign Service Officer and an alumnus of Hope College, will present "Reflections on Poland 1989" at Hope College on Tuesday, Sept. 19, at 3:30 p.m. in the DeWitt Center Herrick Room.

The public is invited. Admission is free.

The address is through the department of history's colloquium series, and will feature refreshments beginning at 3 p.m. The Herrick Room is on the second floor of the DeWitt Center, which is located on Columbia Avenue at 12th Street.

A 1964 Hope graduate, Wackerbarth served as Economic Counselor at the American Embassy in Warsaw, Poland, from 1989 to 1992, early in the country's transition from decades of communist rule. He was recognized for exceptionally meritorious performance for his work in Warsaw by State Department personnel review boards in 1990 and 1991, and was among the recipients of a group Superior Honor Award presented to Embassy Warsaw's Political and Economic Sections in 1992 for outstanding reporting.

Wackerbarth entered the Foreign Service in 1969, and was promoted into the Senior Foreign Service in 1992. He is currently serving as a new career candidate with the State Department's Board of Examiners. He previously served as the Department's Alternate Dispute Resolution Specialist. From 1993 to 1996, he was Economic Counselor at the American Embassy in Brasilia, Brazil, and he was among the recipients of a group Meritorious Honor Award for the Embassy Brasilia's preparation of the 1995-99 Mission Program Plan.

From 1979 to 1983, he was Economic Section Chief at the American Embassy in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. Other overseas tours were as Trade Promotion Officer at the U.S. International Marketing Center in Cologne, Germany, from 1977 to 1979; Principal Officer of the American Consulate in Belem, Brazil, from 1972 to 1974; and Vice Consul in Barranquilla, Columbia, from 1970 to 1971.

Within the State Department in Washington, he has served as Economic Officer for Mexico (1983-85), Desk Officer for Honduras and El Salvador (1974-76), Career Development Officer in the Bureau of Personnel (1997-99 and 1985-87) and Staff Officer in the Executive Secretariat (1974). In 1992-93, he was assigned to the State Department's Corporate Exchange Program, working in the Planning Departments of Philip Morris International and Kraft General Foods International in Rye Brook, N.Y.

He is a 1988 graduate of the National War College. He graduated from Indiana University with a master of arts degree in 1968.

In addition to his government service, he has taught at Kansas State University and was employed by the Oxford Paper Company. At Indiana University he was on the Residence Halls Counseling and Guidance staff.

His wife, Cindy, is also a 1964 Hope graduate. They live in Falls Church, Va., and have two daughters and a son.

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