Home » News » Liberty + Leadership News: Dec. 19, 2019

Liberty + Leadership News: Dec. 19, 2019

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We hope you enjoy these top news stories about TFAS activities, alumni and events this week. Please visit us on social media for additional up-to-the-moment TFAS news and information and sign up for our newsletter to receive weekly updates.

Don’t forget to visit our “Quick Links” to see TFAS alumni, staff, faculty and friends who are writing and making today’s headlines. 

TFAS Students Challenged to Lead with Character as They Join TFAS Alumni Network

TFAS students
Capital Semester on Leadership + the American Presidency students join the TFAS Alumni Network

As society is constantly changing with developments in technology and divisive shifts in our nation’s political climate, one trait remains consistently important: character. This is the message that Ambassador Paul A. Russo shared at the Capital Semester on Leadership + the American Presidency closing ceremony.

Now working in the private sector, Mr. Russo served under President Ronald Reagan as the United States Ambassador to Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean. He also worked as special assistant to President Reagan for political affairs and later served as deputy undersecretary of labor. As the keynote speaker for this semester’s closing ceremony, Ambassador Russo shared the necessary qualities one must possess to be an effective leader.

We can’t sustain this hatred for one another because you disagree with somebody. The future of this country has to be in working together.” – The Honorable Paul A. Russo, United States Ambassador (Ret.)

TFAS keynote speaker
Ambassador Russo provides the keynote remarks at the fall 2019 closing ceremony.

TFAS student Rediet Degefa ‘19 gave testimonial remarks during the ceremony, reflecting on the past semester and time well spent with her fellow TFAS classmates.

“Thank you to my classmates for a memorable semester and for teaching me the value of finding common ground among people with core ideological and cultural differences for productive teamwork,” Degefa said.

To read more about the closing ceremony, visit TFAS.org/CSLTAP19.


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The Fund for American Studies is proud to announce that a generous supporter has decided to offer a matching grant for all gifts up to $20,000 for their special year-end support to TFAS. This is wonderful news! This means that YOUR gift today will be doubled! But time is limited. Don’t miss this opportunity, please make your special year-end gift today!

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Applications Now Open: Joseph Rago Memorial Fellowship with The Wall Street Journal

Illustration of Joseph Rago Courtesy of The Wall Street Journal/Dow Jones

Help us spread the word by telling aspiring and early-career journalists about the TFAS Joseph Rago Memorial Fellowship for Excellence in Journalism. The annual Fellowship provides a nine-month internship with The Wall Street Journal’s editorial team, along with a salary of approximately $5,000 per month from The Fund for American Studies.

The application deadline is Feb. 10, 2020. 

The Wall Street Journal opinion pages are a righteous bully pulpit for freedom. They’re also one of the world’s great proving grounds for young journalists, and the Joseph Rago Memorial Fellowship invites you to take part in the action from your very first day. The Rago Fellow writes, edits and grills guests who visit the editorial board just like any other member of the team.” – Matthew Taylor King, 2019 Rago Fellow

The Fellowship is in honor and memory of Joseph Rago, a Pulitzer Prize-winning member of The Wall Street Journal editorial board who passed away in 2017 at the young age of 34. Joe’s family and The Journal established the fellowship to help continue the legacy of their son and colleague. Joe’s father, Paul Rago, said, “We hope this fellowship will serve as a permanent remembrance of Joe’s contributions, his unrealized potential and as a celebration of the ideals he embraced.” To learn more about the Fellowship, visit TFAS.org/RagoApply20.


Post of the Week

Congratulations to TFAS alumnus and Foreign Service Officer Lester Asamoah ’13 for receiving a Meritorious Honor award from the U.S. Department of State.

Quick Links

Clara Jace ’16 is profiled by her undergraduate alma mater Creighton University. Jace is a Ph.D. student in economics at George Mason University and serves as a teaching assistant for TFAS Academic Director Dr. Anne Bradley’s TFAS course on international economic policy.


TFAS guest speaker Johan Norberg reflects on the past decade’s advances in health, wealth and environment for The Wall Street Journal.


TFAS Academic Director Dr. Anne Bradley says economics offers a better understanding of terrorism in an article for the Library of Economics and Liberty.


Mene Ukueberuwa, Novak ’19, opines in The Wall Street Journal on the natural death of American innovation and why policymakers should “resist the allure of a Frankenstein industrial policy.”


Elliot Kaufman, Rago ’18 writes in The Wall Street Journal about criticism of The New York Times’ “1619 Project” from surprising sources.


Christian Lowe, Novak ’09, reports for Reuters on pension reform block by French trade unions.


Amber Phillips ’07 co-hosts coverage of the House impeachment debate and vote for The Washington Post.


Andrew Cline, Novak ’98, opines for Inside Sources on the number of U.S. petroleum exports being higher than imports for the month of September.


Thomas Kraemer ’06, PPF ’15, is now the director of operations and human resources at the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom.


Ben Weingarten, Novak ’19, writes about the potential national security implications of a business relationship with China for the Gatestone Institute.


Haley Britzky ’16 reports for Task & Purpose on the end to a U.S. military curfew in South Korea that has been in place since 9/11.


Elise Amez-Droz, PPF ‘19, writes on the future of primary care physicians and healthcare for The Washington Times.


Zach Resatar ’19, a recent TFAS Capital Semester on Leadership + the American Presidency graduate, writes about following his passions in Forbes.


TFAS supporter Jim Ziglar, who served as Sergeant at Arms in the U.S. Senate during the Clinton Impeachment Trial, gives his personal perspective on impeachment.


TFAS Trustee Emeritus Mitch Daniels is profiled in a three-part feature for the National Review, highlighting his work to curb cost and protect free speech as president of Purdue University.


Stephanie Slade, Novak ’16, writes for Reason about a new exhibit at the National Museum of American History that recognizes the “Forgotten Workers” who helped enable America’s westward expansion.


Peter Suderman, Novak ’10, reviews the new movie “Richard Jewell” in Reason.


Stephanie Slade, Novak ’16, opines for Reason on the impact of strict border enforcement in the Middle East.


Ryan Lovelace, Novak ’17, reports for The Washington Times on IRS guidelines that would allow nonprofits to withhold identities of their largest donors.


Robby Soave, Novak ’17, writes for Reason about former FBI director James Comey’s recent interview with Fox News and the credibility of the FBI.


Naomi Riley, Novak ’01, shares an analysis of the movie “A Marriage Story” in a blog post for the Institute for Family Studies.


TFAS Regent Emeritus Lee Edwards opines for The Daily Signal on takeaways from UK general election results.


Ryan Lovelace, Novak ’17, reports for The Washington Times on Senate passing legislation on defense, trade and spending.


Chris White, Novak ’13, reports for the Tablet on a report from the Manhattan Institute on bringing values back into the culture of schools.


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