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Sunday, November 11, 2018

How US States Recognize their Goodwill Ambassadors

Being Recognized as a Person of Goodwill in US States

All states have honorary titles and awards to recognize their noteworthy citizens and international friends from abroad. Some of them are very well known like the "Kentucky Colonel," "Arkansas Traveler" and the "Sagamore of Wabash" and others not as much, some of them are very unique, some may seem odd. All of them do have one thing in common is that they are all honorable distinctions and they can 'nearly' all get you legally recognized as a goodwill ambassador for a US state or for a great social cause. This article below reblogged from Atlas Obscura explains a few of the better and less known titles of honor. 

The Goodwill Ambassador Foundation recognizes many of these titles when they are executed by the governor of a state or commonwealth, as well as from national and international organizations like the scouts, Greenpeace, Amnesty International, the IUCN, the United Nations, UNICEF, UNESCO, and award recipients working on the Global Goals for Sustainable Development.

You Can’t Be Knighted in the U.S., But You Can Be Named a Sagamore of the Wabash. Or a Kentucky Colonel. Or a Nebraska Admiral. Or a Commodore of the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations.

By Eric Grundhauser on November 08, 2017

EVERY U.S. STATE BESTOWS AWARDS and honors, but only some come with a ceremonial title. Probably the most famous of these titles is that of the Kentucky Colonel.

Colonel Sanders, the most famous of Honorary Kentucky Colonel. Painting by Norman Rockwell

Kentucky Colonel

Being named a Kentucky Colonel is the commonwealth’s highest official honor, and is bestowed by the sitting governor. Though civilian in nature, the title has its roots in military awards, dating back to 1813, when then-governor Issac Shelby awarded the title of “colonel” to a member of the state’s disbanded militia. After that, the title took on an increasingly ceremonial role, eventually evolving into a beneficent order and independent non-profit organization in the 20th century.

It’s up to each governor to decide who should be honored as a Kentucky Colonel, so the exact requirements for the award are not set in stone, and the number of recipients in any given year can vary a great deal. Essentially, anyone a sitting governor likes, they can make an honorary colonel. Some of the more famous Kentucky Colonels include Muhammad Ali, Lily Tomlin, Mike Pence, and most famous of all, KFC’s Colonel Sanders.

Kentucky isn’t the only U.S. state that gives out the title of Colonel. A number of states have adopted the practice of awarding notable residents with some version of Colonel, or Lieutenant Colonel, including Tennessee, New Mexico, and Georgia.

Other Distinguished Titles from other States

In other states, individuals can be granted similar ceremonial military titles. In Rhode Island, the title of Commodore can be bestowed as a special honor. In both Texas and Nebraska, the governor can award prominent residents the honorary rank of Admiral. Nebraska’s ceremonial honor, formally styled as Admiral in the Great Navy of the State of Nebraska, is especially tongue-in-cheek, since Nebraska is uniquely landlocked among U.S. states. Recipients of this honor include Bill Murray, Sir Edmund Hillary, and Ann Landers.

But it’s not all military titles. In the 1940s, Indiana Governor Ralph F. Gates was to be named an honorary Colonel by the governor of Kentucky, and decided that he should have a similar award to give in return. Thus was born the title of Sagamore of the Wabash, an honor that was until recently the state’s highest award. According to the official description of the award, “The term ‘Sagamore’ was used by the American Indian Tribes of the northeastern United States to describe a lesser chief or a great man among the tribe to whom the true chief would look for wisdom and advice.” The “Wabash” refers to the Wabash River, which runs across the entire state of Indiana. [We should note that while from today’s perspective the title sticks out as an example of cultural appropriation, it is still a respected honor, and the state even introduced a new, higher honor, the Sachem Award, in 2005, again using an American Indian term.]

Other states honor individuals by naming them as members of a special order. For instance, since 1964 in North Carolina, residents can be inducted into the Order of the Long Leaf Pine. In South Carolina, since 1971, citizens can be granted an Order of the Palmetto honor. And in Delaware, the governor can name friends of the state as members of the Order of the First State.

Arkansas Traveler Certificate to Koya Suzuki - Photo: Arkansas Secretary of State Website

Perhaps the most poetic of the high honorary titles awarded by U.S. states is that of the Arkansas Traveler, a name based on a popular folk tale. According to the story, a (real) Confederate colonel got lost in the Arkansas wilderness, and ended up at the home of an unpleasant settler. However, they began to play the fiddle together, and the settler warmed, offering him all the Arkansas hospitality he had. The story has also gone on to inspire songs and other works. The title of Arkansas Traveler was established in 1941 and unlike many other state honors, is only given to visitors from outside the state, such as foreign dignitaries. The first Arkansas Traveler honor was awarded to Franklin D. Roosevelt.

The recipients of state honorary titles are not always precisely tracked from governor to governor, and registration in any related organized groups is voluntary, so the exact number of Commodores, Sagamores, and Long Leaf Piners is unknown. Since such lofty, if completely ceremonial, titles can be given to just about anybody, you might even know a state-level Colonel or an Admiral and not even realize it.

This article was republished from Atlas Obscura

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Jimmy Engineer, Goodwill Ambassador of Pakistan

A Goodwill Visit

By Muhammad Zahid Rifat, Commentary article from the Daily Times

Besides official delegations which visit foreign countries from time to time to promote bilateral relations, cooperation and trade, prominent figures from different fields can and are doing quite appreciable work to promote and highlight the positive, soft, moderate and forward looking image of Pakistan and its peace loving people before the world. This is what world renowned Pakistani artist, social crusader, peace activist and philanthropist Jimmy Engineer has been doing quite actively, sincerely and successfully for some time.

Jimmy Engineer, who regards himself as unofficial goodwill ambassador of Pakistan, recently completed his month long goodwill visit to Canada. During the visit, Jimmy Engineer participated in a number of well-attended functions and events in Mississauga (Ontario), Toronto and Ottawa.

Jimmy Engineer attended a function in Toronto titled 'Artists for World Peace' which was organised by the Universal Peace Federation and the Women's Federation for World Peace, at which he along with two other people was conferred with a certificate as The Ambassador for Peace.

During his frequent goodwill tours to foreign countries, his work was selected and showcased at The Mall, Erin Mills Town Centre in Mississauga Ontario.

On the opening day of the week long painting exhibition, Jimmy Engineer talked about life; illustrating his thoughts and motivation behind his paintings. He also answered questions from the audience which included a large number of people from the Pakistani community as well as local artists, art lovers and diplomats.

He told the appreciative and responsive audience that the sole purpose behind different countries frequently displaying his creative art work is to tell the world at large that Pakistan has great people and great artists. He said displaying his art in foreign countries indeed carries a message, as a lot of people do not know much about Pakistan and this is the best way to highlight the positive side of Pakistan.

Jimmy Engineer said he wears four hats, as a social worker, an artist, a human rights worker and a peace activist.

Prominent figures who were present at the inauguration of the exhibition included Senator Salma Attaullah Jan, MP Iqra Khalid, MP Khalid Rasheed, Consul General of Turkey in Canada Erdeniz, President Flato Developments Inc Shakir Rehmatullah, President Canada — Pakistan Business Council Samir Dossal, Founder and Chief Executive officer of Mindshare Workspace Mississauga Robert Martellacci, President of Ontario Zoroastrian Neville Patrawala and Consul General of Pakistan, and Imran Siddique among many others.

By and large, the visiting world renowned artist, social crusader and philanthropist Jimmy Engineer, has dedicated his life to social causes; his paintings were highly appreciated not only in Pakistan but also all over the world. Through his arthe spreads the message of peace and harmony and promotes a soft and a positive image of Pakistan and its people, each of his paintings duly highlights the different aspects of the lives of the people, their struggle and achievements.

Over the last four decades, Jimmy Engineer has created more than 3000 paintings, 1000 calligraphies and 1500 drawings which are in museums and private collections in more than 60 countries including Italy, France, Denmark, Switzerland, Russia, India, China, Yugoslavia, Japan, Australia, Canada, Britain, Korea, Sri Lanka, Germany, Singapore, Sweden, Belgium, Abu Dhabi , Dubai (UAE), Austria, Spain, Thailand, Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Kenya, Turkey, USA and of course Pakistan. Many of his paintings have remained undocumented as he has been giving countless of these away to charities to raise money for good causes.

As a social crusader, to his credit he continues to spread awareness about food programmes intellectually and developmentally disabled by entertaining them in posh hotels and restaurants and other places of entertainment in Karachi, Lahore and also in Sri Lanka. To raise awareness he has taken almost 100 solo walks for myriad of issues, mainly relating to disadvantaged children, widows and orphans as well as to the hardships and the endemic health problems they continue to endure.

Jimmy Engineer was duly covered and appreciated by the Canadian press and TV as well.

Jimmy Engineer attended a function in Toronto titled ‘Artists for World Peace’ which was organized by the Universal Peace Federation and the Women’s Federation for World Peace, at which he along with two other people was conferred with certificate as The Ambassador for Peace, in appreciation and acknowledgement of his service and contributions as a peace activist. He also addressed the gathering on the occasion and also answered questions from the guests present. Both the Universal Peace Federation and Women’s Federation for World Peace enjoy consultative status with the ECOSOC of the United Nations.

The Canada-Pakistan Business Council has also acquired two wonderful works of art of Jimmy Engineer which are part of his ‘Peace Series’ for the collection of the Royal Ontario Museum. The paintings have been selected by Museum Curator Deepali Dewan.

Jimmy Engineer embodies national integration. He was born to a Parsi family in Loralai, Balochistan, had his education in Lahore and is settled in Karachi, since he became a professional and is perhaps the most well travelled Pakistani artist with international art exhibitions in a number of countries around the globe.

The writer is Lahore-based Freelance Journalist, Columnist and Retired Deputy Controller (News) Radio Pakistan, Islamabad and can be reached at

Monday, March 20, 2017

Become a Local Goodwill Ambassador

Start Local, Represent a Community

As a goodwill ambassador and having worked at both local and international levels for over 15 years I am frequently contacted by people that are interested in joining us and becoming goodwill ambassadors. I always tell people to try to find local recognition before contacting us to get involved in international missions or international cooperation. The best way to do this is by becoming a representative in your own community for a cause or to represent local tourism or a local city (neighborhood) beautification project.

Goodwill Ambassador Ms. Isatu Timbo Speaks At The Way To Happiness International Convention In Los Angeles

Become a goodwill ambassador in your local community to gain recognition, serve as a figurehead for a business, a community organization, a town, a university, or a city. This report from Inside Jobs based on US Department of Labor statistics explains the employment outlook for goodwill ambassadors and I provided some links at the end for those interested in pursuing it further.

How to become a Goodwill Ambassador

Most Goodwill Ambassadors have no higher education and get on-the-job training. Think about earning a Certificate or Bachelor's degree to increase your competitiveness in the field.

Quick Stats

Salary Range: $17,000 – $44,000 Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Goodwill Ambassadors do?

A Goodwill Ambassador is a prominent individual in their community or profession who serves as an honorary Diplomat between entities, like organizations, cities, and nations. If you pride yourself on being a good friend, you might have a future as a Goodwill Ambassador.

Common examples of Goodwill Ambassadors are Actors, Scientists, Authors, and Activists who go on “international friendship missions” to foreign countries, where they present gifts, offer humanitarian relief, and socialize with their contemporaries and counterparts. Like these people, it’s your job as a Goodwill Ambassador to represent one group of people to another for the purpose of building friendly relationships that will be economically, culturally, socially, or politically beneficial in the future.

To accomplish your mission, you typically travel, attend social functions, participate in roundtable discussions, make public appearances, do media interviews, and lobby Legislators.

Although most Goodwill Ambassadors do humanitarian work for organizations like the United Nations, some act as “welcome wagons,” representing businesses to prospects. In this case, it’s your job to find and ingratiate yourself with sales leads by presenting them with token gifts, information, resources, etc. Either way, your job is “making nice” as a means of promoting peace, prosperity, and fellowship.

Should I be a Goodwill Ambassador?

You should have a high school degree or higher and share these traits:

  • Team Player: You're able to listen, communicate, and work with tons of different people.
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.
  • Social: You're happiest working on teams or with other people.

  • Also known at local levels among other locals as: Welcome-Wagon Host/Hostess

    Source: InsideJobs; Goodwill Ambassador

    Other useful links to learn about becoming a goodwill ambassador.

    Wikipedia article about Goodwill Ambassadors (also see the links there for the UN)
    Join the discussion on Quora about Goodwill Ambassadors
    Qualifications for United Nations Goodwill Ambassadors (The Nest)

    Readers are also encouraged to check for the several articles about becoming an ambassador on our blog! Our best two are: What Goodwill Ambassadors do? and What is Goodwill?

    International Ambassadorships (Updated October 2018)

    Update Notice: Globcal International is an international civil society organization (iCSO) promoting global citizenship, indigenous peoples, international cooperation and sustainable development for the United Nations under our stakeholdership, as of October 2018 we updated our legal requirements and procedures for new and continuing members who wish to serve as goodwill ambassadors at a professional level in benign non-state and non-governmental diplomatic affairs with international communities and corporations under the formal protocol of United Nations and best practices emulated by some of the most well known international authorities.

    Globcal International began a diplomatic corps training and development program which has become standard fare for all natural persons working with global issues internationally with states abroad. The program is recognized by the United Nations internationally as a partner with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), as a UNESCO partner and is collaborating with several organizations internationally.
    "The formal process for the legal development of our own goodwill ambassadors is proprietary and exclusively for our own members. It is a process that involves investiture, nomination, orientation, assimilation and presentation to world leaders and international public figures resulting in letters patent and/or a letter of credence. Ambassadors are also developed through the building of their authority through notable institutions, recognitions, homologation and apostilles of documents."
    New ambassadors are qualified and assimilated individually during the course of their first full year following their investiture as a lifetime member with an appointment as a goodwill ambassador at-large under full diplomatic authority while engaged in their vocation or mission. Once fully engaged ambassadors can be recommended and nominated to international orders, to heads of state for honors, pursue knighthood, be recognized by enclave nations and states, and receive a PhD equivalency in the form of Honoris Causa.

    The processes can be costly, each vetting procedure may involve several FedEx packages, an attorney, several notaries and a personal visit to one of our 3000 partner centers in 120 countries before an ambassador can legally become recognized. Those joining must be able to provide documentation of a good deed for which they can be cited; recently or over the past 10 years. (Most classic deed would be rescuing a cat from a tree or another deed and then getting your photo in your local news or tv.)

    New applicants should also have a diploma or an equivalency certificate from high school and be at least 45 years of age or older; OR may be bilingual and have a university degree. All new applicants must show a valid passport, a birth certificate and have a verified PayPal account. Current membership programs are described at the Globcal International blog; our exclusive development program is developed to form both local and global representative ambassadors, generally most ambassadors will be qualified to serve and work locally within their own state of residence prior to working internationally.