U.S. Ambassador to Azerbaijan Addresses Peace Corps Staff

January 10, 2008

Ambassador Anne E. Derse Thanks Peace Corps Volunteers

WASHINGTON, D.C., Jan. 10, 2008 Peace Corps Director Ronald A. Tschetter welcomed U.S. Ambassador to Azerbaijan, Anne E. Derse, to Peace Corps headquarters today. Ambassador Derse thanked Peace Corps staff and Volunteers for their work in Azerbaijan, and briefed the audience on the developments of the country, as part of the Loret Miller Ruppe Speakers Series sponsored by the Peace Corps.

"I am deeply honored and gratified to be here today," said Ambassador Derse. "I have the greatest respect for the Peace Corps. Peace Corps Volunteers bring the people to people connections and are forming important relationships with the Azerbaijani people who are on the frontier of freedom."

Peace Corps Volunteers began serving in the Republic of Azerbaijan in 2003, and 181 have served since that time. There are currently 85 Peace Corps Volunteers in Azerbaijan today teaching English, and working in youth development and community economic development.

Said Peace Corps Director Ron Tschetter, "When I was visiting Azerbaijan, it struck me that Americans know too little about this important part of the world. Azerbaijan is a relatively new post for the Peace Corps, but our Volunteers are already having a significant impact."

During his visit to Azerbaijan in November 2007, Director Tschetter met President Ilham Aliyev who said he would welcome more Volunteers in Azerbaijan.

To learn more about Peace Corps/Azerbaijan, visit the Where do Volunteers go? web page.

The Peace Corps is celebrating a 46-year legacy of service at home and abroad. Currently there are over 8,000 Volunteers abroad, a 37-year high for Volunteers in the field. Since 1961, more than 190,000 Volunteers have helped promote a better understanding between Americans and the people of the 139 countries where Volunteers have served. Peace Corps Volunteers must be U.S. citizens and at least 18 years of age. Peace Corps service is a 27-month commitment.

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