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Clayton T. Dietz
Joseph W. Martin, Jr. Distinguished Alumni Award

There must have been something special in the water on Grove Street, North Attleboro, during the 1920s, for it was home to both Joseph W. Martin, Jr. ('02) and Clayton Dietz ('41), who grew up referring to his adult neighbor as "Uncle Joe." Whereas Martin distinguished himself at the highest level of American national politics, Dietz distinguished himself in the realm of international banking during a 38-year career that brought honor to himself as well as his hometown. Mr. Deitz was excited to learn that he had been chosen to receive this award named in Martin's honor and was looking forward to attending this banquet, but, sadly, he passed away on March 26, 2009.

Dietz distinguished himself in high school as a letterman in football, a drummer in the orchestra under Mr. Bronson, and as an actor playing the lead role in the senior class production of "The Little Shepherd of Kingdom Come." Unfortunately, Dietz’s father passed away a week before graduation in 1941, and Clayton was unable to attend college. When World War II was declared later that year, Clayton became a welder at Rheem Shipyard, Providence, RI, which was engaged in the construction of liberty ships. In 1942 he joined the U.S. Navy and served in the Construction Battalions (Seabees) in North Africa and the European theatre as well as Okinawa and the Pacific theatre for a total of three years.

Following military service, Dietz entered Brown University, earning a degree in Experimental Psychology in 1951. During one summer vacation, he and classmate Lincoln Young helped dig the World War II Memorial Swimming Pool by pick and shovel. Clayton continued his studies at the University of Connecticut and at the University of Colorado, Boulder, from which he received a diploma at the Graduate School of International Banking. Later, while stationed in Brazil, he studied languages at the Universidade De Sao Paulo.

From 1951 until 1965 Dietz participated in the management of the New York-based Citibank's branch network in Brazil. In 1965 he was transferred to the New York headquarters of Citibank and traveled extensively around the world representing the bank. In 1974 he accepted a position with The First National Bank of Denver in Colorado as Vice President & Chief General Manager of the bank’s International Division. In 1977 Dietz accepted, on behalf of the bank, the "E" award from the President of the United States for excellence in the promotion of international activities amongst the business and industrial communities of Colorado. He served as a Director of a Denver multi-lingual school for foreign business students and promoted the bank's growth through establishment of its first overseas Branch in the Cayman Islands.

In 1978 Clayton was invited to participate in the formation of Commercial Credit International Banking Corporation, so he and his wife, Annette, moved the family (including daughter Michelle and son Clayton, Jr.) to Baltimore, MD, where Clayton, Sr. served as Senior Vice President in charge of Credit Administration and as Senior Loan Officer. Three years later he accepted a position in Washington, D.C. as Senior Loan Officer of the International Division of American Security Bank, which eventually became Bank of America. Deitz was retired from both Citibank and Bank of America.

Following retirement from commercial banking in 1989, Dietz became a consultant to an arm of the United Nations, The Bank for International Reconstruction and Development (The World Bank) in Washington, D.C. He traveled around the world as representative of the World Bank, assessing the credit worthiness of individual financial institutions and the design of banking systems. In addition, he co-authored a text for Central Bank administrators and examiners that was translated into various languages. Fluent in several languages, he acted as a lecturer at World Bank seminars for foreign bankers.

Dietz was no stranger to Washington since he served from 1974 until 1989 as a member of the Colorado and then the Baltimore/Washington District Export Councils of the U.S. Department of Commerce and participated in Senior Executive/Diplomat Seminars at the U.S. Department of State.

In retirement, Deitz participated as a Volunteer Park Ranger at Sandy Point State Park and assisted his wife, Annette, a retired Registered Nurse, in her activities as a wildlife rescuer and rehabilitator licensed by the Maryland Department of Natural Resources and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. Together they enjoyed hiking about various sectors of the world and revisiting their memberships in many Country & Golf, Sailing and Equestrian clubs.