Foreign correspondent, diplomat dies

By Ryan Cornell

Mount Jackson resident Anthony “Tony” Das, a foreign correspondent, U.S. diplomat, business executive and consultant, has died.

Das, who had been hospitalized for the past five months with an extensive neck fracture, died in his Mount Jackson home on April 28. He was 60 years old.

According to his wife, Nan Ducklow, Das’ area of expertise was Africa, where he served in the Ivory Coast as Voice of America Radio’s bureau chief for West and Central Africa.

“If there’s anything beyond a type-A personality, that would be Tony,” she said. “He was driven and just an incredible perfectionist, plus the fact that he was so highly intelligent, but not in any sort of arrogant way. He was funny and he was humble and if there was something you didn’t know, he wouldn’t belittle you, he would educate you.”

The two met at a bar in Washington, D.C., in 1995, where they lived before buying a weekend house in Bryce in 2000. The couple moved to Mount Jackson in 2005.

Das also served as deputy director for Southern Africa at the U.S. Information Agency, director of public communication at the State Department and as executive secretary of the U.S. Department of Commerce under Commerce Secretary Ron Brown.

Das retired from the federal government as a member of the Senior Executive Service (SES-3) and was later hired as CEO of a telecommunications subsidiary in Guam.

His most recent position was as chief operating officer and president of Global Markets Consulting Group LLC, a Mount Jackson-based firm specializing in international consulting for non-governmental organizations and Department of Defense contracts.

“I think the biggest lessons I ever learned from him was to take advantage of the situations presented to you, and don’t equivocate about anything and never be timid,” Ducklow said. “His favorite expression was ‘second place is first loser.'”

Das is survived by Ducklow, his mother Dr. Lakshmi Das and his brother, David Das.

A memorial service will be held at Mount Calvary Lutheran Church in Mount Jackson at 2 p.m. June 5. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Edinburg Animal Shelter.

Contact staff writer Ryan Cornell at 540-465-5137 ext. 164, or rcornell@nvdaily.com