Hilary Kouhana, assistant principal at San Marcos High School, was on Capitol Hill in late September advocating for additional Peace Corps funding.
She attended several events hosted by Friends of Liberia during her time in Washington, D.C.
“Interspersed with all the big events were many smaller gatherings and meetings,” Kouhana said. “This Peace Corps 50th Anniversary observance was another life-changing experience for me, and gave me time to reflect upon my two years of service in Liberia, and the impact we had on that African country.”
Some of the 50th Anniversary events in which Kouhana participated were attended by the U.S. ambassador to Liberia, the deputy director of the Peace Corps, and Liberian Vice President Joseph Boakai, who gave a keynote speech at Arlington National Cemetery. After the speech, the crowd marched from Arlington to the Lincoln Memorial. Kouhana and Calif. Congressman Sam Farr (former Peace Corps volunteer) carried the National Peace Corps Association banner in the march.
During her trip, Kouhana and other members of the Texas delegation met with Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison to ask for more Peace Corps funding. Kouhana and Congressman John Carter (of Round Rock) visited Congressman Lloyd Doggett’s staff and about 10 other offices, leaving literature about pending U.S. House and Senate bills related to the Peace Corps.
Another highlight was the gala event that culminated Service Day. Hardball host Chris Matthews, a former Peace Corps volunteer in Swaziland, was a featured speaker.
San Marcos CISD has another former Peace Corp volunteer — Jan Rudnicki, Travis Elementary School librarian, served two years with 300 natives on the tiny atoll of Italik in Micronesia. She remembers her service time as “truly amazing.”