Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Dallas Committee on Foreign Relations?
The Dallas Committee on Foreign Relations (DCFR) is an independent, nonprofit nonpartisan membership organization dedicated to advancing dialogue and understanding concerning relevant global issues.
Originally an affiliate of the Council on Foreign Relations in New York, DCFR is now the premier organization of its kind in North Texas. Founded in 1987, DCFR takes no institutional positions on matters of policy and has no affiliation with the U.S. government.
What does DCFR do?
DCFR seeks to advance dialogue and serve as a resource on policy matters of global significance. We promote knowledge of global affairs and a deeper understanding of the people and events impacting important policy choices. DCFR devotes all its available resources to:
- Presenting programs with prestigious speakers that serve Fellows by expanding knowledge and facilitating frank discussion of relevant geopolitical issues.
- Providing opportunities for interactions, questions, and further discussion with speakers who are experts in their field.
- Offering Fellows a forum to meet and connect with others who share a similar curiosity for global affairs.
How is DCFR different from other organizations?
DCFR is an exclusive network of peers. All DCFR Fellows are subject to a stringent nomination and vetting process designed to ensure that the quality of our membership is high.
DCFR values candor and discretion. DCFR typically does not engage in public discussions, believing that the most productive talks are conducted off the record and according to the Chatham House Rule. Fellows are reminded at each program that they may not attribute remarks to the speaker.
DCFR Fellows enjoy frequent access to unparalleled programming and discussion. DCFR offers a roster of distinguished speakers including heads of state, cabinet ministers, legislators, ambassadors, business leaders, and distinguished scholars and policy analysts. DCFR programs are typically conducted in elegant venues over a seated lunch and Fellows have the opportunity to bring along a client or guest for a modest fee.
Who are the Fellows of DCFR?
DCFR is comprised of senior business and community leaders who are important to the future of North Texas as a thriving international center. Our roster includes business leaders, government officials, scholars, journalists, lawyers, and other distinguished nonprofit professionals.
DCFR also boasts a thriving Term Member program, established to cultivate high-potential individuals between the ages of 26 and 35. DCFR Term Members exhibit outstanding professional potential and a demonstrated interest in international affairs.
What is expected of Fellows?
Payment of annual dues. Once accepted, Fellows are expected to pay their dues at the beginning of each calendar year to cover operating expenses.
Commitment to host programs. DCFR operates on the host model, with Fellows hosting or co-hosting a program every 2-3 years by underwriting the cost of a luncheon or breakfast. Every effort is made to match Fellows with speakers based on the Fellow’s interests and expertise.
What criteria does DCFR use to select its Fellows?
Candidates for DCFR Fellowship should be local leaders in their fields who have demonstrated experience and expertise in international affairs and are important to the development of North Texas as an international center. They should be able to contribute meaningfully to support DCFR programs with their time, talents and resources.
Candidates for Term Membership must be between 26 and 35 years of age (inclusive) at the time of application, exhibit outstanding professional potential and a demonstrated interest in international affairs. Successful candidates may apply for full Fellowship at age 36.
Candidates must submit a completed application along with a resume, and be nominated in writing by one current DCFR Fellow and seconded by another. Nomination letters must address the following criteria:
- Degree of experience, expertise, and demonstrated leadership in international affairs.
- Promise of future leadership and involvement in international affairs
- Level of educational, intellectual and professional achievement
- Character, aptitude and interest in participating in DCFR activities
- Potential contributions to the life and work of DCFR, including initiating and hosting meetings
DCFR does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, disability, veteran status, or political affiliation.
How frequently does DCFR elect new Fellows?
Newly elected candidates are invited to join DCFR on a monthly basis. Current Fellows submit nominations to the Membership Committee, who in turn pass recommendations to the Board of Directors for approval.
What can I expect at a DCFR program?
DCFR typically hosts approximately 2 programs a month at an elegant venue in Dallas such as the Hotel Crescent Court, the Petroleum Club, Arlington Hall or The Belo Mansion. Substantive programs take place over a seated luncheon or breakfast and always allow time for a lively Q&A with the speaker under Chatham House Rule.
DCFR operates under the host model, with an active Fellow presiding over each meeting and underwriting the cost of the program. This allows Fellows to attend as many programs as they like during a calendar year without paying additional fees. Each Fellow is encouraged to host or co-host a program at least once every 3 years.
Fellows may bring along a client, spouse or guest to most programs for a modest fee.