Former Diplomat Crocker Goes Back Into Government Service

By Tom Bacon

One of America's most highly decorated diplomats - Spokane native Ryan Crocker - is going back into government service, even though he retired last year after 37 years in diplomatic work - much of that time in dangerous middle eastern countries.

Crocker has been nominated to the Broadcasting Board of Governors, an independent government agency once called the U-S Information Agency. It oversees all non-military international broadcasts initiated by the U-S government, including the Voice of America.

Shortly after Crocker retired as U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan last year, he was cited in Spokane Valley on August 14th with DUI for a crash from which he drove away for a short distance.

When Crocker plea-bargained the incident down to a reckless driving charge, he told the judge last November that he was extremely sorry for the wreck and promised it would never happen again. His lawyer said Crocker had undergone brain surgery shortly before the incident, but did not deny that Crocker had been drinking.

Whether that glitch in his record will play any part in his Senate confirmation for the Broadcasting Board of Governors post remains to be seen.

Crocker holds distinguished professorships at Yale and the University of Virginia, and he was dean of the Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M.

His work in the foreign service included postings as ambassador to Iraq, Pakistan, Syria, Kuwait and Lebanon before his tenure as ambassador to Afghanistan.
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