Ilchman‐Richardson Award

Rick Ruth (l) at the Jelal-ud-Din-Surkhposh shrine in Pakistan

The Ilchman‐Richardson Award, instituted in 2007, recognizes a domestic employee of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA), of the U.S. State Department, who has made significant contributions in the management of American cultural diplomacy, while leading and mentoring others.

The award is named in appreciation of two former ECA Assistant Secretaries. After her tenure at ECA, Alice Ilchman, formerly Dean of Wellesley College, became the Associate Director of USICA and USIA (1979‐81) and then the President of Sarah Lawrence College, before becoming chair of the board of the Rockefeller Foundation; until her death in 2006, she directed the Jeanette Watson Fellowships. John Richardson, after years in corporate law, investment banking and Radio Free Europe, became Assistant Secretary for State/ECA (1968‐77); he then headed Youth For Understanding and chaired the boards of the U.S. Endowment for Democracy and the U.S. Institute of Peace.

This year’s Ilchman-Richardson Award for a Civil Service employee supporting educational and/or cultural programs in the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) went to Rick Ruth. We were particularly pleased to hear about the jury’s selection, as Rick has been a staunch ally of the Endowment’s efforts for many years. His expertise and deep commitment to excellence in the conduct of cultural and public diplomacy have inspired countless ECA and State Department colleagues. Through a career spanning four decades, he has always focused on relationships with people—predicated on the respectful exchange of ideas and experiences, and reflecting the founding premise and highest aspirations of US cultural diplomacy.

For a complete list of recipients of this award, please consult Ilchman-Richardson Award Recipients.