Meetings and Speakers

Speakers: Diverse, timely, expert perspectives

We participate in the ACFR National Speakers Program which provides prominent speakers at the ready edge of responsibility and expertise regarding timely foreign policy issues & events. We have hosted sitting Ambassadors, former Ambassadors, State Department officials, Officers of the military, policy experts & more from foreign relations organizations and consultancies in the nation.

We also feature Iowa based speakers with special expertise and experiences in foreign relations from our congressional representatives, universities, and major news outlets.

At the Committee on Foreign Relations, our monthly meetings are dedicated to advancing discourse of relevant U.S. foreign relations issues and events while supporting our non-partisan, non-profit position.  We provide a high quality personal experience with a unique intimate forum for dialogue and discussion. We support diverse, timely, well-informed perspectives that contribute to understanding concerning foreign relations.

Upcoming Speakers:

Tuesday, May 4th at 6pm – Ambassador Terry Branstad

Topic: Diplomatic Relations with China

Terry Branstad is the longest serving governor in the history of the United States, having stood at the helm of Iowa’s executive branch for over 20 years. In 2016 he relinquished his post to accept President Donald Trump’s nomination as United States Ambassador to China. President Trump cited Branstad’s extensive experience in public policy, trade and agriculture, and his personal friendship with Chinese President Xi Jinping, who Branstad has known since the 1980’s, as reasons for this choice. Ambassador Branstad stepped down from his role in China in 2020 as the COVID-19 pandemic began to worsen.

Zoom Tutorial:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1LuQxIFUmqXfcoJvIEDkeMBe6aLeCpRQW/view?usp=sharing

Past Speakers:

Meetings: High Quality Personal Experience

Our meetings are typically held at the Wakonda Club in Des Moines each month from September through May of the following year. Due to concerns with Covid-19 our upcoming meetings will be virtual. Please email events@gdmcfr.org for more information on virtual meetings.

Because we limit the size of the membership and the size of the venue, we provide a unique intimate format for our members…giving the opportunity to meet the speaker, engage in discussion, and gain additional knowledge and information.

Agenda & Venue

Our meetings are usually held at the Wakonda Club, 3915 Fleur Drive, Des Moines, Iowa. *Meetings are virtual until further notice*

Virtual agenda:

6:00PM Introduction of the speaker
6:05PM Speaker’s presentation
6:30PM Q&A

The typical agenda includes:

5:30PM Reception with the speaker
6:15PM Speaker’s presentation and Q&A
7:30PM Wrap up and closing comments