Deputy Director of Communications and Community Affairs
Vince Crawley joined the Africa Center in March 2012 and has spent much of his career explaining the United States – both its government and its people – to U.S. and international publics. From July 2007 to March 2012, he served in Stuttgart, Germany, as Deputy Director of Public Affairs for U.S. Africa Command, where he focused on providing accurate public information on the activities of the U.S. military in Africa, as well as the role of the Defense Department in support of U.S. foreign policy. From October 2005 to July 2007, he served as a public diplomacy writer for the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of International Information Programs in Washington, D.C., covering European affairs and international security.
Before joining federal service in 2005, Mr. Crawley spent nearly two decades as a journalist specializing in the link between military affairs and diplomacy. From January 2000 to October 2005, he served as senior Pentagon reporter for Gannett’s Army Times newspapers, where he was a front-row journalist at Defense Department news briefings and provided extensive Washington, D.C., coverage of U.S. government decision-making related to military action in Afghanistan and Iraq. In 1999 and early 2000, he was the aviation reporter for Defense Week, a watchdog publication that critically scrutinized the multi-billion-dollar annual Defense Department budget process.
Living more than a decade in Europe from 1988 to 1999 while working for The Stars and Stripes daily newspaper, he filed thousands of stories and photographs from more than 40 countries and spent months reporting from the field during the Balkans peace missions, as well as regularly attending NATO meetings. In the 1991 Persian Gulf War, he accompanied the first U.S. ground troops to fight Iraq’s Republican Guard. From mid-1989, he reported extensively on developments in Germany and Eastern Europe that led to the opening of the Berlin Wall. Mr. Crawley’s Africa reporting included two visits to Somalia, including the aftermath of the 1993 battle of Mogadishu, where he reported from the wreckage site of two downed American helicopters and co-wrote the first story about foreign fighters, later known as al-Qaida, in the Horn of Africa. In 1994, Mr. Crawley reported from Goma in the former Zaire on the refugee crisis following the Rwandan genocide. In 1997, he reported from Senegal and Uganda on the beginning of a U.S.-African peacekeeper training partnership that has since led to the training of nearly 200,000 African personnel for peacekeeping duties.
Originally from Logansport, Indiana, Mr. Crawley was a U.S. Army journalist from 1981-88, reaching the rank of sergeant and serving on parachute duty with the XVIII Airborne Corps at Fort Bragg, N.C. He and his journalist wife have two adult children and two school-aged children. They live in the Virginia suburbs of Washington, D.C.