On Saturday, the U.S. State Department will dedicate a new sports field in Iraq to Terry Barnich.
Barnich was the co-founder and CEO of research firm New Paradigm Resources Group (NPRG); he was killed by a roadside bomb just outside of Baghdad on Memorial Day 2009. Barnich had worked in Baghdad since January 2007 as a senior adviser for law and policy to the Iraq Transition Assistance Office of State Department’s Electricity Sector, a post for which he volunteered.
And this weekend, the State Department will dedicate its new multipurpose complex in Barnich’s memory. Barnich was an avid athlete, NPRG said this week. And knowing that Americans stationed in Iraq will get to use the field for activities including baseball and soccer would make him proud, the firm said. State Department Ambassador Christopher Hill will preside over the ceremony.
Barnich served as general counsel to the electricity section of the State Department’s reconstruction office as well as a legal advisor to the Iraqi Minister of Electricity. He helped to develop a new modern electricity law and some regulatory protocols that would be necessary for attracting private investments.
In a 2007 interview with PHONE+, Barnich said that despite the danger, and the distance from home, he worked 10 to 12 hours per day, every day, toward what he called “the mission.” He believed that “to protect American liberty at home we need to see liberty succeed in the Middle East. Building the civil institutions of liberal democracy may just sustain our effort to introduce liberty here. I feel the responsibility to do my part,” he explained. “I like to think that in some small way, I will have contributed my part in transferring certain knowledge to the Iraqis that will permit them to otherwise accelerate their seizing control of their own future and make this experiment in liberty a success.”
Barnich was 56 years old when he died. He was riding in a convoy just outside of Fallujah, in the Al Anbar province, when the roadside bomb detonated.