Veterans Month 2015: John D. Feeley
John Feeley, currently the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary in the bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs and nominated to be the next Ambassador to Panama, began his career in public service in 1983 as a Marine Corps officer and helicopter pilot.
Before joining the State Department in 1990, John flew amphibious assault helicopters embarked aboard Navy ships in the Atlantic, the Mediterranean and the Caribbean. Much of his flying was in and over Lebanon in the mid-1980s in the wake of the 1983 bombing of the Marine Barracks in Beirut.
He has spent twenty of his 25-year Foreign Service career in the Western Hemisphere, both abroad and in Washington, with a few tours in the Executive Secretariat and one studying at the National War College.
While he says it’s unlikely he could fit into his flight suit today, much less his Marine “Dress Blues,” John remains of proud of his military service as a Marine, and has been privileged to specialize in the Americas, working at embassies in Colombia and Mexico most recently. A member of a tandem couple, John recognizes that neither his “fly boy” years nor his State career would have been possible without the partnership he shares with spouse, Cherie, a senior FSO in the Office of Recruitment and Evaluation.
On Veterans Day they both salute the sacrifices of our uniformed brothers and sisters, as well as all federal employees who voluntarily place themselves in harm’s way in the service of our great nation.