Useful DC Organizations for Newly Arrived Communicators

Today we examine places international arrivals can turn with an excerpt from my position paper, “The Global Communicator’s Welcome to Washington Guide.”

In raising the topic of transitions to Washington, D.C., with a variety of global communicators, it was striking that few offered suggestions of organizations dedicated to helping them adjust to a new country. One embassy staffer wenCoalition members networking.t so far as to describe all of her contacts as “random.” One told the tale of a European Union group that tried to organize programs for embassy employees from its member nations, only to give up for lack of interest and attendance.

Yet there are membership organizations that cater to a variety of journalists, and communicators from abroad may find involvement in some of them valuable, depending on their backgrounds and the audiences they are attempting to reach. Examples include:

  • National Association of Black Journalists
  • National Association of Hispanic Journalists
  • Society for Professional Journalists
  • UNITY

In addition, the National Press Club holds regular newsmaker events, some of which may be of interest, and the Newseum also offers forums on various issues.

On a broader scale not targeted to communicators specifically, the Meridian International Center, a project of the U.S. State Department, holds a variety of programs for international visitors to America.

Not to be forgotten is the fact that embassies around town sponsor events ranging from concerts to lectures to evening receptions. This represents a good way to meet Washington insiders as well as colleagues from other nations.

Time for you to contribute to the knowledge base by sharing those organizations you have found valuable in gaining a Washington insider’s perspective. Which are your favorites?

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