Shakman began his professional career as analyst of health and technical programs with the U.S. State Department's Agency for International Development (A.I.D.) in Washington, D.C., from 1966-1969. As Program-Officer for the Vietnam Program's Public Health Sector, he participated in the overall planning, development and coordination of both direct assistance and training efforts, including oversight of AMA and ADA medical education contracts, assessments of health facility needs and construction, and coordination with U.S. military and other free world contributors on refugee relief and civilian casualties issues. He also served two extended temporary duty assignments in Vietnam totaling 5 months, and received a Meritorious Service award. He subsequently served in a program analysis and management capacity with the U.S. Office of Economic Opportunity in Washington, D.C.

After leaving government service, Shakman served as Deputy Director of International Programs (Operations) for the Pathfinder Fund, a private-non-profit population and health organization, and as an independent consultant and writer. In this capacity, he assisted the states of Maryland, Washington and Alaska in developing Administration-on-Aging-sponsored nutrition programs; designed an information system to serve disabled children in the Head-start Program; participated in organization/management studies for the Africa Bureau of A.I.D., U.S. State Dept., under the auspices of Action Programs International of Santa Monica, CA; and compiled and edited "The Black Pages Directory and Resource Guide" for People of Color Publications in San Francisco. He also researched, designed and wrote the "Planning and Operations Guide for the National Summer Sports Program" for the President's Council on Physical Fitness.  His work has appeared in Nature (London), USA Today, and other publications.

While an undergraduate at Northwestern University, he served as Sophomore Class President and Mid-Central Regional Director for the Collegiate Council for the United Nations. Subsequently upon acceptance into Georgetown University Graduate School's direct-to-PhD program in History of Political Thought, he earned high honors and was inducted into Pi Sigma Alpha, the national political science honorary; while he also worked briefly on both House and Senate sides of Capitol Hill.  His Ph.D. requirements were completed (history) in 1999 under jurisdiction of the faculty of the American Academy of Biological Dentistry in Carmel, California.  He has lectured there, at the Capital University of Graduate Integrative Medicine in Washington,  DC, and Emperors' College of Oriental Medicine in Santa Monica, California.  His historical expertise has been sought and acknowledged by nervous-system-infection researchers at U. Minn. and Indiana U. via the Mayo Foundation"Medicine's Grandest Fraud PhD" comprises his Dissertation.  Shakman is Executive Director of the Institute Of Science in Santa Monica, CA, USA.

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