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The Dartmouth
June 12, 2024 | Latest Issue
The Dartmouth

Bosworth to stay Trustee chair

Stephen Bosworth '61, who was sworn in as the United States Ambassador to South Korea last Friday, has announced his decision to remain chairman of the College's Board of Trustees for the balance of the 1997-98 academic year.

Since the chairman of the Board is elected to a one-year term, Bosworth's term is set to expire on June 30, 1998. He would not say whether he intended to remain on as chairman past June, but he did not rule out the possibility of another term, either.

Bosworth said that his ambassadorial and Dartmouth responsibilities can be juggled. "The responsibilities of one job would not preclude the duties of the other," he said. Despite

Although he will be living in Seoul, South Korea, Bosworth will travel to Hanover for the Trustee meetings, and therefore will be able to attend to all important Trustee business in Hanover.

Citing the need to fill the College presidency, Bosworth said that he would make every effort to remain active in the Dartmouth community and "continually discuss the College's status with [his] colleagues."

Bosworth was given the oath of office as ambassador by Undersecretary of State for Management Bonnie Cohen at a small ceremony in Washington, D.C. before a group of dignitaries including the Philippine Ambassador to the United States, representatives from the South Korean Embassy and College Trustee Bill King.

According to a State Department official, "Bosworth will be moving to Seoul shortly to formally fill the Ambassadorship, which was left vacant by James Laney when he resigned in January."

Once in the Republic of Korea, Bosworth says he plans to continue "four-party peace talks between North Korea, South Korea, China and the United States," which aim to "formally resolve the Korean conflict and restore stability to the Peninsula."

Given that over 30,000 American troops are currently stationed in the Republic of Korea and that the "Demilitarized Zone" between the Koreas remains the most heavily fortified war zone in the world, Bosworth said bringing the conflict to closure is high on his list of priorities.

Neither South Korea nor the United States has diplomatic relations with North Korea, which remains on the State Department list of "nations which support terrorism." As a result, Bosworth -- as the South Korean ambassador -- will be a crucial link in developing future relations and conducting negotiations with the North.

Bosworth, in his capacity as Executive Director the Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organization from 1995 through 1997, has already dealt extensively with North Korea, which a State Department Official cited "as the primary impetus for his nomination."

Over the past two years, he orchestrated a plan by which North Korea will abandon its nuclear weapons program in exchange for $5 billion of nuclear and conventional energy assistance from the United States and South Korea.

As ambassador, Bosworth plans to "closely observe the South Korean presidential election on Dec. 18," which, in light of recent economic woes, promises to be tumultuous.

"The outcome of the election could seriously affect South Korea's stance towards the Democratic Republic [of Korea]," according to a State Department Official.

Bosworth, who has already served as Ambassador to Tunisia from 1979-81 and Ambassador to the Philippines from 1984-87, became a College Trustee in 1992 and elected chairman of the Board of in 1996.

Bosworth was confirmed as ambassador to South Korea by a unanimous vote of the Senate on Oct. 21.

Were Bosworth to step down as chairman after just one year in June, it would mark one of the shorter chairmanships in recent memory. Although the position is elected with a one-year term, a chairman typically serves for several years. E. John Rosenwald, for example, was chairman of the Board from 1993-96.