In 1961, I accepted employment with the United States Information Agency. After training at the US Foreign Service Institute in Washington, D.C. I was sent to Manizales, Colombia.  With Mary Ann and our newborn son David in tow, I was to serve as Director of the US Cultural Center in that city of about 200,000 population.

There I became deeply involved in the social activities in that city, especially in the slums. I developed one of the largest literacy programs in the nation, helped develop various programs at the boy’s industrial trade school, the reform school, the national prison, the orphanage and in many of the poor barrios of the city. I organized seminars on Community Organization for leaders of social service organizations and was also very involved in the cultural and artistic life of the city sponsoring concerts, poetry readings, art exhibits and theater performances. I was named honorary lifetime president of the local history society after getting it rejuvenated and active again after years of slumber.  [Fifty five years later I was invited back to be the keynote speaker at their hundredth birthday party.]

Upon departure from Manizales I was honored with “Keys of the City in Gold”, “Honorary Citizenship” and named “Adopted Son of the City”, the first time such honors were ever granted to a foreigner.