BU and Harvard Alum Leads Peace Corps

BU and Harvard alum Carrie Hessler-Radelet has been confirmed as Peace Corps Director.
BU and Harvard alum Carrie Hessler-Radelet has been confirmed as Peace Corps Director. –NATIONAL PEACE CORPS ASSOCIATION

A BU Terrier is making Bostonians proud.

Carrie Hessler-Radelet has been sworn in as the head of the Peace Corps, which means she’s now in charge of over 7,200 volunteers in 66 countries. She’s also a graduate of schools on both sides of the Charles: Boston University and the Harvard School of Public Health.

“BU has always been a great supporter of the Peace Corps and is currently ranked as a Peace Corps Top College,’’ she said in an interview with BU Today.

BU alumni are currently serving with the Peace Corps in countries as far-flung as the Kyrgystan, Macedonia, and Cameroon.

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Hessler-Radelet is a former Peace Corps volunteer herself. She and her husband served on Western Samoa, an island nation in the South Pacific, from 1981-83.

“Like so many Peace Corps volunteers, my service changed my life, shaped my passion for international development, and inspired my career,’’ she said after her confirmation on June 5.

Hessler-Radelet has worked for almost three decades in global public health in more than 50 countries. Her jobs ranged from co-founder of the Special Olympics in The Gambia in 1986, to a USAID fellow in Indonesia, where she helped the Indonesian government develop its first national AIDS strategy.

Volunteering with the Peace Corps is, she says, a family affair. Four generations in her family have served, including her aunt (Turkey, 1964-66), grandparents (Malaysia, 1972-73), and nephew (Mozambique, 2007-09).

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