About the Author

Enjoying Reno, NV (December 2014)

I was born and raised in northern California, and graduated from San Diego State University in 2001 with a bachelor of liberal arts and sciences in psychology. I am an alumna of Kappa Delta Sorority, Beta Rho chapter where I was elected vice president of standards my senior year.

I served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in the Republic of Macedonia between 2002 and 2004 in the environmental education and management sector. I earned a master of international relations from Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia in 2006.

Afterwards, I relocated to Washington, DC and worked for the Congressional Youth Leadership Council as a logistics officer. From 2006 to 2010 I worked at the Voice of America (VOA), first as a program assistant and later as executive assistant to the VOA director. I co-coordinated VOA broadcasts from the 2008 Republican and Democratic National Conventions as deputy logistics and credentialing officer.

From 2010 to 2014 I worked at the Paul D. Coverdell Peace Corps Headquarters, first as special assistant to the regional director for Europe, Mediterranean and Asia, and later as special assistant to the associate director for the Office of Volunteer Recruitment and Selection. I also completed the Leadership Development Academy, Peace Corps’ prestigious 18-month professional development program the agency targets towards future senior leadership.

In the summer of 2014, my dream of becoming an American diplomat came true. I received my invitation to join the United States Foreign Service, and my first diplomatic assignment as vice consul at U.S. Embassy Tashkent, Uzbekistan. In preparation, I completed nine months of Russian language and consular tradecraft, and received my consular commission.

I served my second tour as political officer and vice consul at U.S. Embassy Canberra, Commonwealth of Australia, and my third tour as deputy American Citizens Services chief at U.S. Consulate General Ciudad Juárez, México. My current, fourth tour is a domestic assignment to Washington, DC, where I work on international parental child abduction cases in the Bureau of Consular Affairs’ Office of Children’s Issues, which functions as the U.S. Central Authority for The Hague Abduction Convention.

I am married and have two adult stepdaughters. I love science fiction, film, hiking, the outdoors, long road trips, and travel, and am a proud Gen-Xer. As of April 2023, I have still only visited 29 countries and around 43 U.S. states…so there’s a whole world to see! If the Foreign Service or joining the Peace Corps is your dream, never give up.

Not All Who Wander Are Lost

  20 comments for “About the Author

  1. August 13, 2014 at 00:06

    Hi, your blog is great! My husband is going through the process… of waiting 🙂 He’s not in the register yet, but hopefully soon. I just read your flag day story, so congratulations! I was reading how you got your offer and sadly I’m also a bit obsessive with the blogs, trying to find out as much as I can about it.. Congratulations again!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. November 26, 2014 at 22:04

    As a current PCV in El Salvador who is thinking about taking the FSOT soon, it’s really fun to read about your adventures. You are a great writer!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. May 3, 2016 at 09:11

    Hi — great blog! (Found it in a Google Search). I’m John, a program officer with USAID, and and I will be departing Kabul for Tashkent in August (with family in tow!). I’m going to be the deputy country director there and I’m really excited to get to a smaller post in Central Asia. Think maybe we could email and I could get more specific advice and solicit a few tips and hints on consumables, staff, and UAB/HHE/POV timing? I think you can contact me through my Google+ profile listed here, but if that doesn’t work, I’ll post an email address. In either case, I look forward to meeting you in August. Cheers!

    Liked by 1 person

    • May 4, 2016 at 19:55

      Hi John, so nice to hear this feedback! Very glad to answer any questions you have. I have deleted my Google+ profile so I’m not able to see your contact details, but if you’ve used your real surname here I can probably find you in the GAL. I’m currently traveling away from post but will look you up when I come back.

      Liked by 1 person

      • May 5, 2016 at 01:45

        Yup, real name. Also you could go First initial & last name at usaid dot gov. Enjoy your time away from post — I look forward to hearing from you soon!

        Liked by 1 person

  4. texaslawstudent
    June 19, 2019 at 23:49

    You have such a cool story! Was learning Russian difficult?

    Liked by 1 person

    • June 20, 2019 at 03:31

      Thanks! That is nice of you to say. Having studied Macedonian for 13 years before taking up Russian made vocabulary, sentence structure, and the Cyrillic alphabet easier, but by the same token vowels and grammar were tougher for me to adapt to. Russian is pretty difficult, but it’s such a beautiful language that I think it is worth it. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • texaslawstudent
        June 20, 2019 at 12:21

        Wow sounds fun! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  5. August 24, 2020 at 17:12

    Hello. This is a fantastic blog. I’ll definitely be following and I’ll even add it to the Blogs of Interest on my own blog, once construction is finished. I recently got the email invitation to join the Foreign Service as a Facility Manager…a job I branded as a dream job way back in 2012. I’m set to start training in September 2020 and at some point next year, I’m back out abroad…living the life I lived during my time in the Air Force without the uniform. Though I’ll be serving as a Foreign Service Specialist as opposed to a Foreign Service Officer, I do find your blog to be quite informative of what I could encounter during my Foreign Service career. I’m looking forward to reading more and maybe one day down the line, I’ll be the Facility Manager at your post.

    Liked by 1 person

    • August 24, 2020 at 17:16

      Juan Thomas, congratulations and welcome to the Foreign Service! Thanks for reading the blog, and I’m glad you are enjoying it. I look forward to reading yours too once you get it up and running. Buckle your seatbelt…the FS is a wild ride!


  6. Amy Trotto
    October 31, 2022 at 20:07

    Love your blog. Any advice to those who are taking the FSOT? How did you pass in your first go around?

    Liked by 1 person

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