Dan Curtiss was one of the first Peace Corps Fellows to come to the Policy Center to study Conflict Resolution and Peace Studies. He brought impressive experience in humanitarian relief from his time with the American Red Cross in Ohio before his Peace Corps service and in Crisis Corps in Paraguay after his regular service there.
He put that experience to work as a Fellow in Pittsburgh, serving for his entire two years in the Policy Center at Global Links, where he worked with community groups to organize, pack and ship medical supplies donated by area hospitals and pharmaceutical companies. Along the way he took part in a UN-sponsored evaluation of the response to Hurricane Mitch in the Dominican Republic. He did such a good job at Global Links that when he left they hired a full-time Volunteer Program Coordinator to replace him.
Dan was also one of the first interns hired by Catholic Relief Services (CRS) from the Policy Center. He worked at CRS from the time he left the Policy Center in 2000 until 2007, serving in increasingly responsible positions in Armenia, Uganda, Eritrea, and Sudan.
In September 2007 Dan took a position with the American Red Cross Maldives as Head of Office, Tsunami Response. In one photo from the Maldives Dan is the "professor" briefing the staff on a wellness outing. In the other he is the one right in front of the backhoe, inspecting the outflow pipe of a $3.5 million island sewage project.
Currently he's back in the U.S., working for the Red Cross in Tucson, Arizona.
Reflecting on what he gained from the Policy Center, Dan said, "First and foremost the policy center provided an environment that encouraged critical thinking both in theory and practice. One of the most enriching parts of my time at the Policy Center was the interaction among students. Sharing 2 years of hard work with a group of dedicated people from around the world is what I reflect on most. Learning extended far beyond the classroom, from Egypt to Tanzania to Romania. Romania holds a special place as I married the Romanian girl who sat next to me in 'Organizational Theory.' Professionally, the Policy Center influenced how I view my work and turn that into action based on theory, analysis, and practice."