My friends and family often ask me what a Line Officer -- someone who works on the State Department's Executive Secretariat staff -- does. My Thursday schedule gives a good sense of what a Line Officer's typical day on the road involves.
4:00 a.m. I woke up in my hotel at the Shanghai Shangri-La, where I've been staying for the past week in preparation for the Secretary's upcoming visit to see the World Expo being held here in Shanghai. I'm still a little tired from yesterday's site visits. We toured 10 possible Expo pavilions for the visit! I checked emails on my Blackberry and got ready for the day.
6:00 a.m. I went over today's scheduled meetings and site visits over breakfast in the hotel restaurant.
8:00 a.m. I did a walk-through of the hotel ballroom where the Secretary will hold a "Meet and Greet" with consulate staff during her visit. I went through the whole program with the site officer for this event and the hotel manager.
8:30 a.m. My car took me to the Expo site, where I went to see the USA Pavilion again.
9:00 a.m. I completed a walk-through of the USA Pavilion presentation with the Shanghai Consulate's Control Officer and Advance Team Liaison Officer for this visit. We walked through the Secretary's movements and viewed the videos that are on display.
11:00 a.m. We took an Expo golf buggy to the other side of the Expo site (twice the size of Monaco) to do a walk-through of the China Pavilion. This is the largest and tallest national pavilion on the site. We met with the pavilion staff, who walked us through their proposed itinerary for the Secretary's visit.
12:30 p.m. We had lunch on the Huang Pu River with Chinese Expo officials.
1:30 p.m. We went to the Expo Center to prepare for the Secretary's bi-lateral meeting that she will hold. We discussed the participants, movements and topics for the meeting.
2:30 p.m. Afterwards, we returned to the U.S. Consulate to hold meetings with consulate staff about the press for the visit, as well as finalizing the Secretary's final schedule. Finally, I prepared for the final countdown meeting that we're holding later tonight with the consulate staff.
5:00 p.m. Final Countdown Meeting: Everyone at the consulate who is involved with the Secretary's visit attended this meeting to review the final schedule and talk through all of the movements of all other principals who will be coming for the visit.
7:30 p.m. I had dinner at a local Chinese restaurant to try some of Shanghai's famous soup dumplings.
8:30 p.m. I had several trip calls with decision-makers back in Washington. These calls covered several topics including the Secretary's schedule in Shanghai.
2:00 a.m. Finally went to bed!
Learn more about careers at the U.S. Department of State here.