Fund for American Diplomacy

We want to encourage members to keep AFSA’s Fund for American Diplomacy in mind as they consider their charitable contributions. The Fund for American Diplomacy, one of AFSA’s two 501(c)(3) arms, supports outreach to tell the proud story of the Foreign Service to the American people. The FAD’s aim is to build a domestic constituency for the Foreign Service so that we have supporters, ideally in all 50 states, prepared to stand up for the Foreign Service and defend our vitally important mission. You may make a donation by clicking here. The Fund is also registered in the Combined Federal Campaign as “Diplomacy Matters-AFSA” and its CFC number is #10646. We appreciate your support. All donations to the FAD are tax-deductible.

Detailed information on the programs run under the Fund for American Diplomacy:

AFSA Awards – This program is designed to help with professional development of the Foreign Service and increase the public understanding of the Foreign Service. Divided by the nine pay grades and by specialization, these awards (ranging from $2,500-$4,000) are made to Foreign Service employees for their achievements and projects undertaken in the Foreign Service. Applicants are nominated by colleagues.

Memorial Plaque – In the Department of State lobby, the memorial wall plaques are updated and a ceremony is held annually honoring those employees who lost their lives while serving in the U.S. Foreign Service. The U.S. Secretary of State presides over this ceremony.

Road Scholar Program – Five-day academic programs for senior citizens to further understand U.S. diplomacy and the Foreign Service. These programs are sponsored by the national Road Scholar organization ( where AFSA is responsible for organizing the Foreign Service program offerings nationwide. Road Scholar handles all registration of attendees, but AFSA provides all the curriculum and speakers.

Speakers Bureau – Retired diplomats speak at universities, community groups, and other forums on international affairs issues incorporating their personal experience during these discussions. Groups contact AFSA to request a speaker, and AFSA then locates the closest individual that matches the group’s request.

Sinclaire Awards – Awards of $1,000 are bestowed to Foreign Service Officers who show outstanding success in learning one of 41 difficult languages referred to as a “hard” language in a relatively short period of time. Individuals must score a S-3+/R-3+ or better on the Foreign Service standardized language test in order to qualify to be nominated for the award. Any Foreign Service Institute (FSI) Instructor can nominate an individual for an award. Although, there is no cap on the amount of awards that can be granted in a single year, approximately 8-10 are bestowed each year.

Essay Contest – High school students nationwide compete in this contest, where prizes include an all-expense paid education voyage with Semester at Sea, a trip to Washington, D.C. and a meeting with the Secretary of State. Students submit essays of 1,000-1,250 words explaining how the Foreign Service plays a role in resolving a global issue of their choosing. Home schooled students can also apply.

Minority Intern Program – Minority college students explore a career in the Foreign Service in high profile office with a substantive work assignment. The students are paid a stipend for their summer internship.

Inside a U.S. Embassy – Our bestselling book that shows how the U.S. Foreign Service works for America through a unique look at a-day-in-the-life of Foreign Service employees at an U.S. Embassy and in Washington, D.C.

AFSA Events – In 2010, AFSA began a robust program of events aimed at promoting diplomacy and educating students and the public about the Foreign Service. These include speaker series, book talks, and panels featuring experts on various diplomatic topics.

We ask you again to please consider supporting the Fund for American Diplomacy. It has no income other than donations from people like you, who believe in the importance of the Fund's mission.

For more information, contact Ásgeir Sigfússon, AFSA's Director of Communications, at (202) 944-5508 or