William Thatcher Dowell
Tel: (917) 922-4506
US citizen, born in New York City. Married with one son,
Freelance writer; Co-editor of the Essential Edge, an internet-based magazine covering the greater Lake Geneva (Switzerland) area. Co-editor the 4th Edition of the Essential Field Guide to Afghanistan.
Formerly European Regional Editor and Correspondent, Global News Enterprises (http://www.globalpost.com), a Boston-based internet news service focusing on international reporting. Frequent freelance assignments for the World Economic Forum (Davos and regional meetings, including Kazakhstan, Jordan, Sharm al Sheikh, Istanbul, Warsaw, etc.) and for IMD (The International Institute for Management Development in Lausanne, Switzerland). Co-authored In the Shadow of the Dragon. with Winter Nie at IMD.
CARE International (2005-2008). Media and Information Coordinator for CARE Emergency Group, CARE International Secretariat, Geneva (from October 2005 through June 2008). Responsible for coordination of worldwide media coverage of world’s third largest non-sectarian, non-government relief and development organization, including print, radio and television. CARE currently operates on a budget of nearly $800 million, and employs approximately 15,000 staff in nearly 70 countries. The International Secretariat coordinates operations among CARE’s 12 national members and more than 65 country offices. Also responsible for publishing a quarterly review of emergency operations. Personal reporting on the ground covered floods in India, Nepal and Bangladesh, the 1995 earth quake in Pakistan, and Cyclone Sidr in Bangladesh as well as drought in the Horn of Africa.
TIME Magazine (1989-2001). Staff correspondent, based in Paris, Cairo, Hong Kong and New York. Covered the Arab world and Iran from 1989 through 1993. Southeast Asia Bureau Chief, based in Hong Kong from 1993 through 1995. Northeast USA bureau (based in New York) from 1995 through 2001. Previously worked as contract stringer for TIME in the Paris Bureau from 1975 through 1989. Extensive reporting on Africa (cover on Where Goes the Continent), the Middle East and Indian subcontinent. Major interviews included Lee Kwan Yew, Hafez al Asad, Yassir Arafat, Itzak Rabin, Sheikh Fadlallah (Hizbollah, re :hostages in Beirut, Lebanon), Kofi Annan, Sheikh Omar Abdel Rahman (re: World Trade Center bombing in New York), Chris Patten (when governor of Hong Kong), BP President John Brown, Gordon Wu, Benazir Bhutto, and others. Sub-Saharan reporting included Sudan, Somalia, Ethiopia, Kenya, Congo, Liberia, Cameroun, South Africa, Liberia, Senegal and Mali. Middle East reporting covered all of North africa, including Libya, as well as Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Iran, Iraq, Syria, Turkey, Lebanon, Yemen (Sanaa and Aden).
New York University (2001-2005). Edited The Global Beat, a website focusing on foreign policy analysis, for NYU’s Center for War, Peace and the News Media. Adjunct professor, taught graduate courses on journalism in the Middle East, and undergraduate honors course on the literature of journalism. Also conducted training programs as part of a joint NYU-US State Department project training mid-career journalists and editors in Albania, Romania and Armenia. Covered UN efforts to open the Congo River in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (This assignment for Tina Brown's Talk Magazine, involved descending the river in a motorized dugout canoe from Mbandaka—formerly Coquilhatville—400 miles northeast of Kinshasa).
ABC News (1975 through 1989). Contract television reporter, field producer, and radio correspondent for ABC News, Paris Bureau. Field interviews on breaking news for Peter Jennings and former White House spokesman, Pierre Salinger, who was then Paris bureau chief. Covered the Iranian revolution, the rise of Lech Walesa and Solidarity in Poland, the civil war in Beirut and numerous stories in Africa, the Middle East and Asia. Walked overland from Terimangel on Pakistan border to the Panjshir Valley in Afghanistan, accompanying a small supply caravan for Ahmed Shah Massoud. Also produced numerous translations from French into English and dozens of documentary films in Paris. Attended regular prayer sessions at Nauphle le Chateau in France with Ayatollah Khomeiny.
NBC News (1971-73), Radio correspondent in Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos from 1971 through 1972. TV field producer/utility editor, NBC Washington Bureau, 1974 during last days of Watergate. Covered early stages of the war between East and West Pakistan which resulted in the creation of Bangladesh. Worked as news editor for NBC briefly at Rockefeller Center in New York in 1972, before returning to report in Vietnam.
National Public Radio (1973-74), Associate producer, “All Things Considered,” Washington, DC. In charge of coordinating world wide hard news coverage.
US Army (1965-69): Drafted during the buildup for Vietnam. Initially assigned to the US Air Defense School in at Fort Bliss, in El Paso, Texas, as principal platform instructor teaching logical problem solving in repairing Hughes Aircraft computer systems used in continental air defense. Taught US, Japanese, Korean and German classes. Eventually reassigned to area studies and attached to a province advisory team in An Loc, Vietnam (1967-69). After 18 months in Vietnam, left the US Army and returned to Vietnam to work as a journalist.
• Translated “The Islamic Movement in North Africa” by French Arabist, Francois Burgat, for The Middle East Studies Center at the University of Texas at Austin. This became a key university text on contemporary Islamic movements. The print run sold out twice.
• Served on the Awards Panel for the Overseas Press Club from 1995 through 2002.
• Worked with the (Henri Dunant) Humanitarian Dialogue Center in Aceh, Indonesia, in 2003 on conflict resolution project to negotiate ceasefire between the Jakarta government and the GAM separatist independence movement. This mainly involved leading a group of 40 Indonesian journalists to most of the major towns in the province and conducting town meetings with local notables in order to discuss the advantages of a peace settlement. The government signed the ceasefire, but soon violated it.
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (1961-64): Majored in History (Russian, Middle Eastern and Asian) and Comparative Languages (Russian and Asian). Also studied Russian and German language.
Current Foreign Language ability: English is mother tongue. Fluent in French.