American Diplomacy Project: Amb Marcie Ries, Amb Charles Bowers and Dr. Thomas Schwartz | May 20

As part of Harvard’s American Diplomacy Project: A Foreign Service for the 21st Century, Americans who are “tuned in” to world affairs are asked to contribute their perspectives to this non-partisan national discussion of how to revitalize and modernize American diplomacy and the U.S. Foreign Service. The goal is to generate specific proposals to be published in a Harvard University report for the White House, Congress and the Department of State in the winter of 2020.

Ambassador (Ret.) Marcie Ries is a Senior Fellow at the Belfer Center’s Future of Diplomacy Project. She is also a Senior Advisor in the Department of State’s Foreign Service Institute Leadership and Management School. During thirty-seven years of diplomatic service, she served in Europe, the Middle East, and the Caribbean. She is a three-time Chief of Mission, serving as Head of the U.S. Office Pristina, Kosovo (2003-2004); as United States Ambassador to Albania (2004-2007); and, most recently (2012-2015), as United States Ambassador to Bulgaria.

Charles Richard (Dick) Bowers served as the US Ambassador to Bolivia from 1991 through 1994. During that time, the American Embassy in Bolivia’s capital, La Paz, was the largest and most complex U.S. embassy in South America. Ambassador Bowers grew up in the San Francisco Bay area, attended the University of California, Berkeley. He entered the U.S. Foreign Service in 1967. From 1961 to 1964 he served in the U.S. Army as a Russian linguist in West Berlin at the height of the Cold War. As a career member of the U.S. diplomatic corps, Ambassador Bowers served in the U.S. Embassies in Panama, Poland, Singapore, Germany and Bolivia. He retired from the Foreign Service in 1995. Amb Bowers has been a Board Member of the Tennessee World Affairs Council since 2012.

Professor Thomas Schwartz — Professor of History; Professor of Political Science; Professor of European Studies; Vanderbilt University. Thomas Alan Schwartz is a historian of the foreign relations of the United States, with related interests in Modern European history and the history of international relations. Professor Schwartz has held fellowships from the Social Science Research Council, the German Historical Society, the Norwegian Nobel Institute, the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, and the Center for the Study of European Integration. He has served as President of the Society of Historians of American Foreign Relations. He served on the United States Department of State’s Historical Advisory Committee as the representative of the Organization of American Historians from 2005-2008.