Enid Schoettle

Dr. Enid CB Schoettle, Leader in Nuclear Disarmament and Recipient of the National Intelligence Distinguished Service Medal, Passed Away in October.


Dr. Enid Curtis Bok Schoettle passed away from natural causes on October 18, surrounded by her family. She was seventy-nine years old. The daughter of the late Judge William Curtis Bok, Justice of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, and Nellie Lee Holt Bok, noted author and speaker, Enid spent her life’s work inspired by her grandfather Edward W. Bok’s well-known saying, “Make the world a bit better or more beautiful because you have lived in it.” With these words in mind, she focused her studies and then career on foreign policy and international relations. Her career with the Ford Foundation, the US Government’s National Intelligence Council, and the United Nations brought her around the world, working with governments and non-profit organizations alike to create policies for peace and nuclear disarmament, with the goal of ameliorating challenges humanity faces around the globe.

Growing up the youngest of five children, Enid spent her childhood in Radnor, Pennsylvania, attending the Baldwin School, graduating in 1956. From childhood on, she spent her summers in Camden, Maine. It was there that she developed an abiding love for nature, walking the Camden Hills and sailing on Penobscot Bay, becoming that resilient Down-Easter so notable in Maine. She attended Radcliffe College, Cambridge, MA, majoring in history and graduating with honors in 1960.  After college, she taught political science at Swarthmore College before returning to pursue her doctorate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), receiving her Ph.D. in Political Science in 1967.

In 1976, after teaching Political Science at the University of Minnesota during which she authored Postures for Non-Proliferation: Arms Limitation and Security Policies to Minimize Nuclear Proliferation, and leaving as the first woman in that department to be granted tenure, Enid accepted an appointment in the Ford Foundation.  She served as Director and then Vice President, International Affairs Programs. During her eighteen-year tenure, she made grants to and oversaw programs in international affairs at academic institutions and non-government organizations focused on multi-lateral global affairs, most notably nuclear disarmament.

Joining the federal government in 1993, Enid served on the 12-member National Intelligence Council as the first ever National Intelligence Officer for Global and Multilateral Issues. She was awarded the National Intelligence Distinguished Service Medal in 1996 for her leading work there. From 1996-97, she served as Chief of the Advocacy and External Relations Unit of the United Nations (UN) Department of Humanitarian Affairs, working with the Under-Secretary for Humanitarian Affairs on UN policies.  In 1998, Enid was named Consultant and Special Advisor to the Chairman of the National Intelligence Council, which oversees the Department of Defense, the State Department and the Central Intelligence Agency.

After retiring from public work in 2004, Enid became a member of the Board of Directors of the Henry L. Stimson Center whose aim is to promote “Pragmatic Solutions for Global Security.” She has been a member of the Advisory Board of Women in International Security, a member of the American Society of International Law and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.


Enid married Ferdinand P. Schoettle, Jr in Philadelphia, PA in 1965; the couple had two sons. After the marriage ended in 1975, Enid raised the boys as a single mom in New York City, walking them to school every day on her way to work. In 1990, she married Ambassador Herbert S. Okun, who passed away in 2011. She is survived by son Michael, his wife Tara and their children Ashlynn and Alyssa; and by son Derek, his wife Christine and their children Henry, Reese, Tatum and Jane. Enid adored her sons, daughters-in-law and grandchildren, and often told her friends that her family brought her the greatest joy of her life.  Enid is also survived by many Bok family members, as well as by friends from around the globe. She will be greatly missed by all.


Services will be held on November 17, 2018 at 11:00am  in St. Michael’s Episcopal Church in Milton, 112 Randolph Avenue, Milton, MA. For  those unable to join there will be a celebration of her life that will be held in the Springtime. Those wishing to donate in Enid’s memory may consider a cause dear to her heart:  The Innocence Project, 40 Worth Street, Suite 701, New York, NY  10013.  Attention Development; or https://www.innocenceproject.org/