Peace Corps
Thai 27
1969
 
 
 
Clay Nagao
(L-R) My wife Jean, our nephew Grant Odo, his bride Traci and Me at Grant & Traci's wedding near the Ihilani Resort on Oahu (Yes' that's me with the shaved head. I couldn't wait for my hair to fall out gradually so I started shaving last October)
I was a member of Thai 8… Malaria Eradication.
Thai 27 was the last Peace Corps group I helped train. I was your cross-cultural coordinator (along with Pock Otis, Jim Crawford, and Bonnie Pacala)

I returned to the East-West Center right after, where I worked as a Housing Officer with a Jean Tasaka (originally from Maui), who became my wife in Washington, D.C. in 1971. I was then a U.S. Foreign Service Officer preparing to go to Beirut, Lebanon.

I worked as the ambassador's aide, vice consul, and second secretary at the American Embassy in Beirut, Lebanon from 1971 to 1973; served as acting consul at the American Embassy in Amman, Jordan for a brief period in 1973; worked in the Operations Center of the Department of State in Washington, D.C. in 1974; and served as executive assistant to the Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs in Wash., D.C. from 1974 to 1975.

I returned to Hawaii and worked at the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations from 1976 to 1979, then went to law school at the University of Hawaii from 1979 to 1982. I clerked for Justice Edward Nakamura at the Hawaii Supreme Court from 1982 to 1983, then worked as a deputy attorney general for the State of Hawaii handling child abuse cases from 1983 to 1987. I returned to the Hawaii Supreme Court in 1987 as staff attorney for the court and left in 1991 to become chief counsel of the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission. I retired from that position and from the State in 1998 after 21 years of State service.

My wife Jean retired from the State (budget analyst and deputy finance director) in 2002 and we've been traveling and loafing ever since.

Although I had always hoped to visit Thailand after the Peace Corps, I never did manage to get back there. I had hoped the Foreign Service would send me there but instead I was posted in the Middle East and Washington, D.C., and an assignment to Kuala Lumpur fizzled out at the last moment.

I've kept in touch with only Jim Mohan (works for UNICEF), Bill Vanderburg (hospital administrator in Maine), and Neil Jones (retired and living in Mexico), but have lost touch with others with whom I was in contact for many years -- Art Crisfield of Thai 1, and James Kirchhofer and Jean-Paul Chaine of Thai 8.

Incidentally, I'm 65 now. Can it really be 36 years since Pepeekeo?

 


Photo of me back in Peace Corps days...1968-69. (I'm the one standing up...with the long sideburns). No idea who the other two people are