Council on Foreign Relations

  • Assistant Director, External Affairs

    Meetings and Membership
  • Overview

    CFR’s Washington External Affairs operation primarily focuses on actively engaging members of the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives and their staff, bringing these top decision makers timely, relevant, and useful analyses in an effort to further inform policymaking at the U.S. Capitol. Through discussion and examination of the critical challenges facing the United States and international community, the program seeks to serve as both a direct resource for Congress and a convener of leading thinkers and practitioners both on and off the Hill in a variety of nonpartisan fora. The secondary focus on this program is facilitating limited engagement with the diplomatic community and executive branch. The successful candidate will be skilled at working in a nonpartisan, team-oriented environment. 

    The major responsibilities of this position will include (but are not limited to):

    • Developing and coordinating outreach to members of the Senate and House and their staffs – working to get CFR staff and publications before leading foreign policy decision makers in an environment in which competition for attention is exceptionally high
    • Fostering solid relationships within the Capitol Hill international affairs community
    • Tracking and updating CFR staff on international affairs developments on the Hill
    • Generating and implementing creative new program initiatives
    • Conceptualizing and implementing programming for a variety of Capitol Hill constituents, including senior congressional staff, Senate and House Chiefs of Staff, individual members of Congress, and others
    • Coordinating briefings for members of Congress
    • Managing some logistical aspects of program planning including, but not limited to, coordinating logistics for CFR meetings on Capitol Hill, arranging travel for speakers, drafting invitations, sending and monitoring event invitations, and making catering arrangements
    • Responding to requests for distribution channels for Council initiatives and helping provide contacts for Washington-based distribution lists
    • Maintaining CFR’s database of relevant information on congressional, executive branch, and diplomatic community constituencies
    • Developing and coordinating tailored outreach to other Council constituencies in Washington including the Executive branch and the diplomatic community
    • Drafting and dissemination of Council materials to targeted audiences
    • Other program support as needed


    • Bachelor’s degree in international relations or a related field with strong academic credentials – Master’s preferred
    • Relevant federal legislative branch background, including a minimum of four years of congressional experience
    • Excellent connections to relevant international affairs practitioners on Capitol Hill
    • Practical, experience-based understanding of the legislative process and current international affairs issues
    • Dynamism and ability to work well individually as well as on a team
    • Superior verbal and written communication skills, including proofreading and editing ability
    • Experience in developing and tracking budgets preferred

    About CFR

    Founded in 1921, the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) is a leading nonprofit membership organization, research center, and publisher, with headquarters in New York, an office in Washington, DC, and programs nationwide. It is dedicated to increasing America's understanding of the world and contributing ideas to U.S. foreign policy. CFR's 5,000+ members are leaders in international affairs and foreign policy. CFR also publishes Foreign Affairs, the preeminent magazine on global issues, and provides up-to-date information about the world and U.S. foreign policy on its award-winning website,


    The Council on Foreign Relations offers a benefits package that is among the best offered by nonprofit institutions today, including an award-winning health and wellness program, an on-site fitness center, and generous leave policies and health insurance programs.


    The Council on Foreign Relations is an equal opportunity employer and actively seeks candidates from a diverse background.


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