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A Lifelong Navy Link

A Lifelong Navy LinkAfter an accomplished Navy career, Tufts graduate Joseph Strasser has settled down in Newport, Rhode Island, where he enjoys his role as executive director of the Naval War College Foundation.

Medford/Somerville, Mass. [09.09.05] Joseph Strasser has traveled the world in a Tall Ship, rubbed elbows with world leaders and commanded officers on the Navy’s first nuclear-powered aircraft carrier. But the retired Navy rear admiral is just as content working behind the scenes in Newport, R.I., where he holds the top position at the Naval War College Foundation.

“I wanted to come back and be part of the exciting job the War College does, educating future military leaders,” Strasser told the Newport Daily. “It’s such a rewarding thing to do.”

Strasser’s return to the Naval War College came five years after he retired as president of the institution, which prepares tomorrow’s Navy leaders and provides assistance in strategic planning to the chief of naval operations. The foundation bolsters the college’s mission by increasing public awareness about the school and providing financial support.

Although Strasser is finishing out his career in Newport, the Fletcher graduate began his 36-year Navy stint south of Rhode Island in Annapolis, Md., at the U.S. Naval Academy. He landed there in 1959 after a friend convinced him to attend the school.

“I thought, ‘Well, I’ll give that a try,’” Strasser recalled to the newspaper. “I did and I never looked back.”

Fresh out of the academy, Strasser’s first worked as an American exchange officer on an Argentine ship – the 346-foot Libertad – one of the largest Tall Ships in the world. He was on board for the ship’s maiden voyage, which took him to four continents.

Later in his career, Strasser again traveled the globe as an executive assistant to Adm. William Crowe, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. In this capacity, the New Jersey native met kings, prime ministers and presidents.

“I was representing the United States. It was a wonderful experience to meet people who had such great influence,” Strasser told the Daily.

Through the Navy, Strasser was also able to obtain two master’s degrees in international relations and international law and diplomacy from The Fletcher School.

Aside from furthering his own education, Strasser, throughout his career, has worked to improve education for others. After serving five years as president of the Naval War College, Strasser headed to The Pennsylvania State University in 1995. He worked as a campus executive officer for two years until he became dean of the University’s Commonwealth College0.

In 2000, when the opportunity to assume leadership of the Naval War College Foundation arose, Strasser left Penn State to return to Newport, where he and his wife had always felt most at home, according to the Daily.

“My wife and I made a lot of friends here,” Strasser said to the newspaper. “This was our longest stay in any one area.”

According to the Daily, Strasser will stay put for a little while longer. He plans to spend at least two more years at the helm of the Naval War College Foundation, he told the newspaper.












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