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Steve Cowper Class of 1974
The class of 1974 and those lazy days shooting hoops and hanging out in New Delhi seems vaguely familiar and definitely from another lifetime ago. I remember good times; but as I get closer to 50, if I can remember anything that long ago it is a good day.
After Delhi, we went to Alexandria, Virginia, where I went into complete cultural shock because I had to deal with a public high school and 400 classmates. It was an interesting time for me and also very lucky for me that John Hoefling and others from the Delhi days were around to keep my perspective in check. Somehow, I did manage to get my International Business degree at GWU.
With my degree tucked under my arm, I headed out to Saudi Arabia where I participated in the “gold rush” of the late 70’s. After spending seven years there, decided it was time to return to California, where I got my MBA. Working in San Francisco for about five years was fun, but the work I was doing for a multinational company developing international business operations overseas was not my cup of tea. I fled the Bay Area to Portland, Oregon, where I stayed three years before I decided it was best to go back to what I knew and liked the best. So I joined USAID in 1992 and have been with them ever since and truly enjoy development work.
My first wife decided she didn’t like the Foreign Service life so we divorced in 1995. The single life style didn’t really thrill me, and I was really lucky to run into Pam in South Africa, who swept me off my feet. We were married in 1998 - she has two boys - so with a family of four ranging from ages 21 to 26, we have a full house when they visit. Pam also works for USAID and is the now the Mission Director in Tanzania, where we have just moved. I’m the Regional Executive Officer (Administrative Officer) so I travel around to missions in Africa now to put out fires. Having spent four years in Bamako, Mali, Dar Es Salaam is an certainly an interesting change of pace - much different sights and sounds but we did enjoy our time French West Africa.
Still loving the adventure but now am hitting tennis and golf balls - which is a lot less stressful on the old body of mine. I’ll try to get John Hoefling to join me next time there is a reunion – sure would enjoy seeing and talking to the names I read on the e-mail distribution lists that Mary (class secretary) has been sending out. Cheers.