Slider
Slider

|

Slider

Right direction | Working hard to stay strong together: An interview with Ambassador James Rosapepe

Editorials & Columns
Typography
  • Smaller Small Medium Big Bigger
  • Default Helvetica Segoe Georgia Times

JAMES Carew Rosapepe was born on May 20, 1951, in Rome, Italy.

He is the son of two freelance journalists. He grew up in New York before moving to the Washington area in the late 1960s. Rosapepe attended Yale University as an undergraduate student. https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/local/1997/11/28/to-get-where-hes-going-diplomacy-did-wonders/2fa94ede-8587-4fce-82a9-630bedb30e82/

Tiberiu Dianu

He was elected to the Maryland House of Delegates (1987-1997). Then he was appointed as Ambassador to Romania during the Bill Clinton administration and ended his mandate during the George W. Bush administration (1998-2001). An internal State Department report was strongly critical of Rosapepe’s leadership and management during his ambassadorial service, while crediting him with several accomplishments. https://www.baltimoresun.com/news/bs-xpm-1999-12-22-9912220008-story.html

Upon his recall from Romania, Rosapepe was appointed to serve on the Board of Regents of the University System of Maryland. He left the board to run against incumbent Senator John Gianetti in District 21, whom he defeated in the 2006 election for Maryland State Senator in District 21. He was unopposed in the 2010 and 2014 elections. Maryland State Senator Rosapepe (2007to present) currently sits on the Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs Committee and serves as a Deputy Majority Whip.

I have known Ambassador Rosapepe since the summer of 1999, during the Smithsonian Folklife Festival in Washington, DC, when the festival hosted programs on New Hampshire, Romania, and South Africa. https://folklife-media.si.edu/docs/festival/finding-aids/CFCH.SFF.1999.pdf I also remember the fact that, during Ambassador Rosapepe’s mandate in Bucharest, I started to receive at home the U.S. Embassy in Romania informative bulletins, the first initiative of its kind to connect people on the embassy mailing list.

During the period of October 3 and 4, 2019, James Rosapepe attended, as a Board Chair, the annual ALIANTA/The Alliance Gala, in Washington, DC, at the Conrad Hotel and the Romanian Embassy, respectively. https://alianta.org/

With that occasion, on October 3, 2019, Ambassador Rosapepe granted me an exclusive interview.

1. Mr. Ambassador James Rosapepe, you served as a U.S. Ambassador to Romania in the past. How would you characterize the year of 2019 for Romania and Romanians?

Well, I am not living in Romania right now. So I am not the one to judge. It’s for Romanians to judge. Obviously, you are having an election campaign going on [the Romanian presidential election of November 2019]. And this is a very competitive election, and that’s what democracy is all about. So, I am always enthusiastic about Romanian democracy and it seems to be going strong.

2. Thank you so much, Mr. Ambassador. How would you characterize, in short, the U.S. relations with Romania during the current administrations, Trump and Iohannis?

My impression is they are good. I think both the U.S. administration and the Romanian administration have worked hard to stay strong and keep the strategic alliance together.

3. Thank you so much, Mr. Ambassador. Last question: what challenges will Romania face in the future, in your opinion?

I think the challenge is in everyone. In running, the world faces with climate change. Weather is every way. So, we are all facing challenges of climate change. Obviously, as a member of NATO, next to Ukraine, across the Black Sea from Russia, Romania has security concerns that make its NATO alliance and partnership, the strategic partnership with the United States, as important as ever. And that’s what ALIANŢA is about. It’s maintaining that strong people-to-people relationship between Americans and Romanians.

4. Thank you so much, Mr. Ambassador. You were very kind.

Thank you.

Tiberiu Dianu has published several books and a host of articles in law, politics, and post-communist societies. He currently lives and works in Washington, D.C. and can be followed on Medium. https://medium.com/@tdianu

previous arrow
next arrow
Shadow
Slider

Read more articles

Visit our Facebook Page

previous arrow
next arrow
Shadow
Slider