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Gerald Loftus was a U.S. Foreign Service Officer from 1979 to 2002, and worked in Africa, the Middle East, the Caribbean, and Europe. Brussels, Belgium remains his anchor. Why "Avuncular" American? Avuncular is defined as "In the manner of an uncle, pertaining to an uncle; hence, kind, genial, benevolent or tolerant."

From July 2010 through June 2014, Loftus headed the Tangier American Legation Institute for Moroccan Studies, TALIM. The only National Historic Landmark located outside the United States, the Legation houses a research library, museum, Arabic literacy program, and hosts a number of other educational and cultural activities.