The World Affairs Council of Orange County Names Dr. Richard Downie as President

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IRVINE, Calif., August 16, 2022--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The World Affairs Council of Orange County announced today that Dr. Richard Downie has been named the council’s new president.

The World Affairs Council of Orange County (WACOC), a California based non-profit, non-partisan organization, is pleased to announce Dr. Richard Downie as its new president. As a highly experienced leader with a significant international affairs background, the WACOC believes Dr. Downie will help refine its strategic direction; grow and develop the organization and membership; strengthen partnerships; and build new relationships in the community in his new role.

Dr. Downie brings a wealth of leadership and international experience to the WACOC. He currently also chairs the Board of the Pacific Council on International Policy’s Mexico Initiative, sits on board for the World Hwa Rang Do Association (a non-profit martial art) and for Westport Construction Incorporated. He is a trusted member of the Faculties of the Thayer Leader Development Group at West Point, NY and Missouri State University’s Washington D.C.-based Defense and Strategic Studies Program. Dr. Downie is a also member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

Following a distinguished career in the U.S. Army, Dr. Downie was Director of the U.S. Department of Defense’s Perry Center for Hemispheric Defense Studies in Washington D.C. for nine years. A graduate of the United States Military Academy (USMA) at West Point, he also holds a Ph.D. in International Relations from the University of Southern California. He has appeared on CNN/E, Univision, Telemundo, Bloomberg, NPR, France24 and other media outlets as a commentator on international security issues.

The Chair of WACOC’s Executive Board, Jeff Hobert, says, "Dr. Downie is the right person, at the right time to lead this organization. We believe his strong leadership experience will help to focus the Council’s efforts in meeting current and future challenges, and build on our past accomplishments."

About the World Affairs Council of Orange County

The World Affairs Council of Orange County (WACOC) is a non-profit, non-partisan organization in California. We provide insights and foster thoughtful dialogue with foreign policy experts and influential thought leaders, to help members and the public better understand critical global issues that impact our community, our country, and the world. We believe that an informed, engaged community with access to fact-based perspectives on international issues helps to ensure more effective US policies, and a more secure, equitable and inclusive world.

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Lindsay Strong