“At the Water’s Edge: Foreign Policy in a Partisan Age”

APRIL 24-25, 2014

Washington, D.C.



Washington, D.C., February 20, 2014: It is with great pleasure that the American Committees on Foreign Relations announces that Ambassador Paula Dobriansky is to be the opening speaker at the ACFR 2014 Annual Conference. Ambassador Dobriansky brings invaluable insights from a fruitful career in foreign relations and national security. She is an expert in Eurasian affairs and received the Secretary of State’s Distinguished Service Medal for her work in the State Department. Announcement and Bio (PDF)



Washington, D.C., January 29, 2014: The American Committees on Foreign Relations is pleased to announce John D. Negroponte as the recipient of its 2014 Distinguished Service Award for the Advancement of Public Discourse on Foreign Policy. The award will be bestowed at ACFR’s Annual Conference on April 25, 2014, in Washington, D.C.  Bio (PDF)


This( Registration Form (PDF) )may be mailed, or scanned and emailed. If submitting a scanned form via email, send it to Laura Hyson at (

This ( On-line Registration Form ) may be filled out and submitted on-line.

Please send all payments by mail.


• $375: Full Conference Registration ($425 AFTER April 15)
• $125: Registration for a spouse or significant other ($150 AFTER April 15)
• $50: Registration only for the the DACOR Reception

Please return a mailed form and/or your check (made payable to the American Committees on Foreign Relations).  All forms and money should be sent no later than April 15, 2014. 

Mailing Address:

American Committees on Foreign Relations
DACOR Bacon House, Third Floor
1801 F Street, NW
Washington, D.C. 20006

Phone: 202-682-0053

The 19th annual American Committees on Foreign Relations conference schedule is listed below.   A printable copy is available at:  2014 Program of Events (PDF).


Thursday, April 24

6:00 – 8:00 pm  Reception and Registration, Embassy of the Republic of Panama 2601 29th Street NW, Washington, DC 20008 (About five blocks west of Woodley Park/Zoo Metro Station)

Friday, April 25

1777 F. St. NW, 2nd floor

7:30 – 8:20 AM    Registration and Continental Breakfast

8:20    Welcome and administrative announcements: Philip French, Executive Director, ACFR

8:30 – 9:15    Morning Keynote: Paula Dobriansky, Senior Fellow, Harvard University JFK Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs and former Under Secretary of State for Global Affairs

9:15 – 9:45    Break

9:45 – 11:30    Morning Panel: Democracy & Freedom as Common Cause

Carl Gershman, President of National Endowment for Democracy

Mark Green, President of the International Republican Institute

Shari Bryan, Vice President of the National Democratic Institute

Moderator: ACFR Executive Director Philip French

11:30 – 12:15 PM:    Lunch

12:15 pm – 1:15    Presentation of ACFR Distinguished Service Award for the Advancement of Public Discourse on Foreign Policy, Remarks by Ambassador John Negroponte

1:15 – 2:15    Afternoon Keynote: Michael O’Hanlon, Senior Fellow, Foreign Policy Center for 21st Century Security and Intelligence, Brookings Institute

2:15 – 2:30    Break

2:30 – 4:15    Afternoon Panel: Realities of US Foreign Policy Making

Scott Bates, President, Center for National Policy

Ted Bromund, Margaret Thatcher Center for Freedom, Heritage Foundation

Stephen Sestanovich, George F. Kennan Senior Fellow for Russian and Eurasian Studies, Council on Foreign Relations

Moderator: President Richard Slaughter

4:15 – 4:30    Closing Remarks: Richard Slaughter

5:30 – 7:00    Cocktail Reception DACOR Bacon House, 1801 F St. NW (across the street from 1777 F St.)


2013 ACFR Study Trip: Cuba in Transition


In April 2013 the American Committees on Foreign Relations sponsored a study trip to Cuba as part of an educational exchange that allowed participants to interact with local Cubans from all walks of life—architectural restorers, priests, government officials, editors, economists and diplomats. The U.S. government still restricts travel to Cuba in general, but new rules implemented by the Obama Administration allow Cuban Americans to travel freely and allow all Americans to obtain a license to visit Cuba for educational, religious or other purposes involving "people-to-people" activities.

Visiting Cuba is like taking a journey in a time machine. The streets are filled with 1950s-era cars. The buildings are vintage art deco (albeit often with crumbling facades). Sounds of Caribbean and African rhythms, often produced by elderly musicians, fill the air. Cuba, however, far from stuck in a time warp, is in fact a country undergoing rapid change. Every day, buildings are restored, new automobiles hit the roads, and new tourist facilities are rising up everywhere, reflecting the political developments happening every day.

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