COFFE’s luncheons have been temporarily suspended due to the coronavirus.  Please check back periodically for information on when the luncheons will resume.

The luncheons from September 2018 to May 2019 were impacted by two major factors. The September to December luncheons were impacted by the involvement of a scheduled speaker in the impeachment hearings. Luncheons after February 2020 were canceled due restrictions imposed to control the spread of the coronavirus. However, the luncheons that were conducted were well attended and focused on topics that were timely, informative, and enlightening.

Our September speaker was Bill Corr, former Deputy Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services and now working with former Rep. Henry Waxman at the non-profit Waxman Strategies. He has co-authored a major study of the problem of skyrocketing prescription drug prices. Mr. Corr gave a very timely presentation on ways to address and reduces the high cost of prescription drugs. A presentation that given the current pandemic seems even more timely in retrospect.

Our scheduled speaker for October was Congressman Jamie Raskin (MD-08), a member of the House Judiciary and Oversight Committees. Congressman Raskin proudly represents Maryland’s 8th Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives. There were high expectations that Congressman Raskin would offer insights on the issues being addressed by the two key committees on which he served. However, he was required to remain in the Capitol to attend a hearing and was unable to speak. He was rescheduled for June but that was canceled due to the coronavirus.

As Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of the DC Control Board and later as two-term DC Mayor, November’s luncheon speaker, Anthony (Tony) Williams, had a lasting positive effect on economic development and political stability in the District of Columbia. Mr. Williams discussed his approach to improving efficiency and productivity within DC government agencies. He believes that a key part of his success strengthening the DC government was helping employees build a sense of ownership of their daily activities.

January speaker Joe Bonfiglio is the president of EDF Action—the advocacy partner of the Environmental Defense Fund. Chartered as a nondeductible 501c4, the 750 EDF Action employees are engaged in promoting bipartisan action by Congress, states, cities and environmental organizations to combat climate change and other threats to the environment. Mr. Bonfiglio notes that while there is no single action (a magic wand) that will save the environment, a change in focus is essential. This includes a tax on carbon that will put market pressure behind reducing emissions. Large numbers of economists agree that a carbon tax is a desirable and practical partial solution. EDF Action supports the concept because it would have a wide range of supporters. For the 2020 election, EDF Action is prepared to teach candidates at all levels how to win when supporting environmental improvement.

Our February speaker, Ambassador J. Stapleton Roy is the Founding Director Emeritus of the Kissinger Institute on China and the United States at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C. In 1978 Ambassador Roy participated in secret negotiations that led to the establishment of the U.S. and People’s Republic of China (PRC) diplomatic relations. The Ambassador noted that the U.S. should disabuse itself of the notion that President Xi Jinping is plotting to oust the U.S. from Asia because President Xi has other matters to contend with like a declining economy, a shrinking workforce, and new threats like the coronavirus epidemic. Equally, if not more important, the Ambassador noted that President Xi must confront the separatist forces in Xingjian, Hong Kong, and Taiwan that threaten the realization of the China dream of having a unified, strong, and prosperous country by the year 2050.

Luncheons are held at the Holiday Inn, Westpark, in Rosslyn, VA. The luncheon begins at 11:30 with a social period followed by lunch, the presentation, and a question and answer session and ends by 1:30 PM.  The cost of the luncheon is $25 for COFFE members and $30 for non-members.

We wish to thank our partner organizations, the Federal Executive Institute Alumni Association (FEIAA), the Senior Executive Association (SEA), National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association (NARFE), and the National Capital Area Chapter of the American Society for Public Administration (NCAC) for helping to spread the word about COFFE”s luncheons.


To RSVP for the luncheon please click on the link below. In the body of the email write your name and if bringing guests, please list each person’s name on a separate line. A confirmation email will be sent when your request is processed. Register here for luncheon.



Ambassador J. Stapleton (Stape) Roy talked briefly about the Coronavirus and how China’s internal politics are driving many of the decisions about how to deal with the problem and how to share the information with the rest of the world. The majority of his very thorough presentation focused on the US/China relationship and the implications for trade and other issues and on China’s relationship with Hong Kong and Taiwan. The presentation was followed by a questions and answers session.

A full review of Ambassador Roy’s presentation is included in the COFFE newsletter which is distributed to the membership.


In collaboration with the Arlington Public School System and to promote interest in public service, COFFE has initiated a program where one teacher each month is able to attend our luncheon, as our guest. Both teachers and students benefit from this collaboration.


Ms. Lina Stolyar is the recipient of the 2019 Council of Former Federal Executives Public Service Scholarship.  Ms Stoylar accepted the scholarship and gave brief remarks at the September 2019 COFFE luncheon.

Ms. Stolyar is a 1st year Master of Public Policy (MPP) student at Georgetown’s McCourt School of Public Policy. Her goal is to pursue a career in public service aimed at addressing health inequities and ensuring accessible and affordable health care to all. Her professor, Judith Feder, states in her nomination that during her first semester, “Lina demonstrated the intelligence, enthusiasm, and dedication to evidence-based policy that will make her a star in public service.

In order to help pay for her education, she has worked as a Teaching Assistant for McCourt’s Negotiation class and currently serves as a Research Assistant for Professor Jean Mitchell. Lina’s initiative, ability, and commitment are further demonstrated by an award she and her fellow MPP classmate Emilia Calmat received as winners of the Georgetown Public Policy Challenge. They received $3,000 to implement their innovative project, Breathe Easy–a proposal designed to address DC’s high asthma prevalence and ER utilization rates by supporting home visits by community health workers.”

Professor Feder concluded Ms. Stolyar with the following: “I’m confident this will just be the beginning of a stellar public service career that will make you proud, as I am, that you helped her on her way!”


Founded in 1988, COFFE’s objectives are to support public service and to enable current and former federal and local government executives and all other members of the public who are interested, to keep abreast of major government policy and operations issues.  COFFE is a non-profit, tax-exempt organization.  COFFE and Associates welcome all who are interested in promoting public service and learning about major policy issues to attend our luncheons and to become a member.  Read More