Building U.S.-Indonesia Mutual Understanding Since 1994

Book Discussion: “Fragments From a Mobile Life” by Margaret Sullivan

Wednesday, October 23, 2019

2:30 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

USINDO Event Room

1625 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Suite 550, Washington D.C., 20036


The United States-Indonesia Society and the US-Philippines Society cordially invite you to join us as author and veteran Asia hand Margaret Sullivan discusses her new book, Fragments From a Mobile Life, imparting her rich and memorable experiences from Indonesia and the Philippines during their formative times.

Ms. Sullivan’s Foreign Service family first encountered Indonesia in 1965 when her husband Dan served on the Indonesia Desk at the State Department. They moved to the emerging “New Order” Jakarta in 1967 and lived there until 1971. They were then posted to Cebu City, Philippines until 1974. Margaret returned to Cebu for the 1986 snap election that resulted in the fall of Marcos and Cory Aquino’s “People Power” presidency.

Later, in Washington, she helped coordinate cultural events in observance of the Philippine Centennial in 1998. Following the 2004 tsunami, she coordinated a major USINDO disaster rehabilitation project that established the University of Syiah Kuala Lab School, which operates successfully today.

From the era of Indonesia’s New Order, through the Philippines’ Martial Law and democracy period, to post-tsunami redevelopment in Aceh, Ms. Sullivan offers her keen observations and wisdom about history, culture, intercultural understanding, and interesting people — plus some of the delicious food she encountered along the way.

Please join us for this rich glimpse into Asia’s history from the perspective of an insightful participant and cross-cultural professional. Copies of Fragments From a Mobile Life will be available for purchase ($25.00) and signing by the author.

To register, please click here as soon as possible, and no later than 3:00 p.m Monday, October 21. For questions, please contact or call 202-232-1400.

About the Author
Margaret Sullivan is a writer, artist and public educator who was born and lived her first six years in pre-war China, then in Burma in the early 50’s. She is a graduate of Woodstock School in India and American University, with a BA in English. Both as the wife of a Foreign Service Officer and, later, in her own capacity, she lived and worked in Malaysia, Nigeria, Indonesia, the Philippines, Sierra Leone and Singapore as well as Washington.

Her professional work included: A visiting scholar at the Center for Cebuano Studies, San Carlos University, covering the Philippine elections from 1986 through 1992; Executive Director of the Philippine Centennial Foundation, which coordinated the 1998 nationwide commemoration of the hundredth anniversaries of Philippine independence and the relationship between the United States and the Philippines; and Project Coordinator for the post-tsunami development of the University of Syiah Kuala Lab School, a collaboration between USINDO, the University, and the Sampoerna Foundation. Earlier, she was Associate Director of the Asia Society’s Washington Center and a Visiting Fellow at the Institute for Southeast Asian Studies in Singapore.

Her publications include the award-winning book, “Can Survive, La,” Cottage Industries in High-rise Singapore (1985, 1992) and a children’s book, The Philippines: Crossroads of the Pacific (1998), as well as articles in many publications including the Foreign Service Journal, the Far Eastern Economic Review, the Asian Wall Street Journal and the Huffington Post. She also edited Change and the Muslim World (1981).

Her paintings and photographs have been exhibited in Indonesia, the Philippines, Sierra Leone and Washington DC.

This event is co-organized by the United States-Indonesia Society and the US-Philippines Society