News & Press: Newsletters

Nominations Open for IRC Board Members

Wednesday, September 12, 2018  
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Dear friends,

If you're familiar with nonprofit organizations, you know the important role played by the board of directors. These volunteers do so much to support the work of the IRC, and we're most grateful. The IRC's Nominating Committee has put out a call for nominations for board members who will begin a three-year term in January 2019. Please review the information available on the IRC website », and give it some good consideration. If you or someone you know would be a strong fit, we encourage you to submit a nomination. Nominations should be received by Friday, September 28. Thank you in advance for your help in identifying volunteer leaders for the IRC.

We've just published the guidelines for the annual Eliot S. Berkley Award, which recognizes a high-school junior or senior for superior academic interest and competence in international studies. The winner of the competition receives a $500 scholarship. We invite you to pass this information along to students or teachers you might know, along with a reminder about the upcoming Your Global Future college and career fair for high-school students. The deadline to register for Your Global Future is Friday, September 28; the Berkley Award deadline is Friday, October 12. You'll find additional information below.

In a month's time, on Tuesday, October 9, we'll be gathering in the KC Chamber Boardroom at Union Station for the annual CHINA Town Hall. If you're available that evening, please join us for this free program, which will feature former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice by webcast and an in-person panel of experts discussing trade and tariffs with China. We do ask you to register to help with planning; see below for more information.

Our guest this week, Human Rights Watch's Washington director, Sarah Margon, will be arriving soon. We have very limited space remaining in our luncheon tomorrow where Ms Margon will discuss issues impacting women around the world; please email April » if you're still interested in attending. Registration is still open for the evening program at Stinson Leonard Street (downtown KCMO) where we'll talk about a range of human-rights concerns worldwide. Please see below for more information and join us if you're able.

Thank you for helping to cultivate a global perspective in Kansas City.

Kind regards,

Matthew Hughes, Executive Director • 816-423-2632

This week, the World Citizen Blog is a review of the book, 
Should We Fear Russia? ». We welcome blog contributions from IRC members and friends. If you are interested in writing a blog post, please review some frequently asked questions », where you'll also find out how to submit your post.

The International Relations Council is currently accepting nominations for its 2019 board of directors. Board members serve a three-year term, starting January 1, and are eligible for re-election to a second three-year term. Nominations must be received by Friday, September 28, 2018. All submitted nominations are reviewed by the nominations committee, and successful candidates are contacted by the committee to be considered for approval by the full board. The selection of the best candidates is driven by the desire to ensure that the board is comprised of engaged members who bring a range of essential skills and experiences and reflect the organization's international focus. Instructions for nominating yourself or someone you know are available on the IRC website ».

Each year, in memory of our founder and longtime executive director, Eliot S. Berkley, the International Relations Council presents this award to an exceptional high-school junior or senior who has demonstrated superior academic interest and competence in international studies. The award includes a $500 scholarship. Complete applications include three parts: an informational form, an essay of 1,000 to 1,200 words, and two letters of recommendation. Materials must be received no later than 5 p.m. on Friday, October 12, 2018. The awardee will be notified by Monday, October 22, and invited to attend the IRC’s Global Honors Evening » on Thursday, November 1Read more »

The Peace Day Challenge, organized by the United States Institute of Peace, exists to raise the profile of the International Day of Peace and to affirm peace as a real alternative to the violence we see every day in the news. It is all about inspiring a day of action on September 21, focused on building peace through real-life activities and sharing on social media at #PeaceDayChallenge. Since launching in 2015, the Peace Day Challenge has reached 104 million people in 148 countries on social media, engaged dozens of organizations, and inspired activities in more than 30 countries and 41 U.S. states. 
Click here » for information on how you can participate in the challenge. Resources include an updated social media kit; graphics to share; and new action ideas for young people, teachers, and organizations.


Jason Rose, Community Intern
Jason is a senior at the University of Missouri–Kansas City, majoring in Spanish and Business Administration and having completed a Spanish language and culture program at the University of Granada in Spain. He pairs his experience in team-building and training development with his work in his community and neighborhood administration and looks forward to taking these skills into the global community. He also serves as the president of Kansas City's Troostwood Neighborhood Association. When Jason isn't studying or working, he enjoys cycling, researching other cultures, and following his favorite soccer clubs.



Limited Seats Available
Expert Luncheon: Issues Facing Women Around the World 
– Thursday, September 13 – 12-1:30 p.m. – Lidia's Kansas City
Please join the IRC, the United Nations Association of Greater Kansas City, and other area organizations as we discuss issues facing women around the world with special guest Sarah Margon, Washington director of Human Rights Watch, during a lunch program at Lidia's Kansas City. The ticket price includes a three-course plated lunch. To register, please send email April at
Read more »

Closing Soon
An Evening with Sarah Margon: Washington Director of Human Rights Watch 
– Thursday, September 13  – 5:30-8 p.m.  – Stinson Leonard Street
Join us as we hear from Sarah Margon, the Washington director of Human Rights Watch, for this survey of human rights around the world in 2018. 
Read more and register »

Registration Open
Book Club: War on Peace: The End of Diplomacy and the Decline of American Influence 
Tuesday, October 2 – 6:30-8 p.m. – Kauffman Foundation Center
The IRC Book Club gives participants the opportunity to discuss foreign affairs, global topics, authors' perspectives, historical events, and their current local relevance in a respectful, engaging setting. Please join us for this thought-provoking exploration of the transformation in America’s place in the world by Pulitzer prize-winning author Ronan Farrow. This program is free and open to the public, though reservations are requested to help with planning. 
Read more and register »

Registration Open
Global Experience: Emilie's French Teas – 6-7:30 p.m. – October 3 – Emilie's French Teas
The IRC's Global Experience series asks, "What's your global story? Do you get the chance to share it?" Join the IRC as we hear from the founders of Centered Spirit Cultural and Holistic Center and Emilie's French Teas in Waldo as they speak on the global nature of tea. Topics will include the history, sourcing, and cultural meanings of tea around the world. After the presentation, participants will be encouraged to taste free tea samples, ask questions, and discuss this delicious beverage with fellow attendees
Read more and register »

Registration Open
CHINA Town Hall: Tariffs and Trade with China
, Featuring Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice via Webcast – 4:30-7 p.m. – Tuesday, October 9 – KC Chamber Board Room in Union Station
CHINA Town Hall is a business-focused conversation on China taking place in communities throughout the United States and China. This year, former U.S. Secretary of State and National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice will address a national audience, including our Kansas City participants, via live stream; participants will be able to submit questions via social media. Following the live stream, a panel of Kansas City-based experts will address the audience in person. 
Read more and register »

Registration Open
Your Global Future 
– Tuesday, October 16 – 9-3 p.m. – Union Station
Away from the borders and coasts, Kansas City-area students are often surprised to find just how many international academic and professional opportunities await them after high school. This unique college and career fair will bring together dozens of international businesses, organizations, and colleges and universities to show students just how global their future can be. The program will be underwritten by support from the participating organizations and generous Kansas City-area donors to ensure that attendance is completely cost-free for teachers and students. Sponsor packages to increase visibility and impact are available, and schools will be eligible to receive up to $200 to offset the cost of bus transportation. 
Read more here »

Registration Opening Soon
What Do You Owe the World? – Tuesday, October 30 – 7-9 p.m. – Jewish Community Campus
The IRC is proud to support the Command and General Staff College Foundation at Fort Leavenworth and the Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City to provide a civil environment for thoughtful discussions about critical issues addressing the question: What do you owe the world? The speaker for this event is Dr. Shannon French, Inamori professor of ethics and director of the Inamori International Center for Ethics and Excellence at Case Western Reserve University. 
Read more here » 

Registration Open 
Global Honors Evening – Thursday, November 1 – 5:30-9 p.m. – InterContinental Hotel 
Each year since the early 1980s, the IRC has recognized individuals and organizations for contributions to foreign policy and global affairs, international commerce, or the Kansas City community. In 2018, we’re pleased once again to celebrate a range of individuals and groups that make Kansas City a shining global community, this time with a special evening on the Kansas City Plaza. The celebration will include cocktails, hors d’oeuvres and dessert, live entertainment, special recognitions, and the chance to meet some of Kansas City's most notable and beloved global citizens. Please join us! 
Read more and register »

Does your business or organization have an upcoming event that could be of interest to IRC members? To have your event considered for inclusion in future IRC newsletters, please contact Matthew Hughes »

English for Citizenship Classes », presented by Kansas City Public Library RISE 
Wednesdays, August 29-November 14 – Central Library

Fiesta Hispana KC », presented by the Greater Kansas City Hispanic Heritage Committee 
Friday, September 14-Sunday, September 16 – Barney Allis Plaza

Refugee Day at the Zoo », presented by JVS 
Saturday, September 15 – 9:30-2 p.m. – Kansas City Zoo

Latin American Cinema Festival: The Eternal Feminine, presented by Sociedad Hidalgo 
Saturday, September 15 – 11 a.m. – Rio Theater

Filipino Association 50th Anniversary Gala », presented by the Filipino Association of GKC
Saturday, September 15 – 5:45-11:59 p.m. – Crown Center

Trade Mission: Mexico », presented by KC EDC
September 16-20 – Mexico City and Guadalajara

Refugee Journey Stories, presented by JVS
Monday, September 17 – 5-6:30 p.m.  JVS

Trauma and Immigration », presented by Alive and Well Communities and JVS 
Tuesday, September 18 – 6-8 p.m. – Kansas City Public Library, Plaza Branch

Why Trade Matters », presented by the World Trade Center of Kansas City 
Wednesday, September 19 – 7:30-10:30 a.m. – William Jewell College

Tea & Talk, presented by Missouri Western State University International Student Services 
Wednesday, September 19 – 12-1:30 p.m. – Blum 210

Exploring the Visual Language of Maps & Data, presented by the University of Kansas 
Friday, September 21 – 4 p.m. – 317 Lindley Hall

Kansas Missouri Dream Alliance 10th Anniversary Gala », presented by KS/MO DREAM Alliance 
Friday, September 21 – 7-10 p.m. – The Venue

Peacekeeper's Roundtable, presented by the United Nations Association 
Saturday, September 22 – 1 p.m. – Truman Library

Latin American Cinema Festival: The Heiresses, presented by Sociedad Hidalgo 
Saturday, September 22 – 11 a.m. – Rio Theater

Latino Arts Festival », presented by Kansas City Kansas Latino Arts Festival
Saturday, September 22 – 1-6 p.m. – Lot in front of 
520 Minnesota Avenue

Welcoming Week: Film, I am Rebecca », presented by JVS and the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art 
Sunday, September 23 – 1-2 p.m. – Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

International Cooking Class, presented by Missouri Western State University International Student Services 
Monday, September 24  5-6:30 p.m. – Commons (Res Hall)

Humanities Lecture Series: Frontline – Latinos and Immigration from a Woman’s Perspective, presented by Hall Center for the Humanities
Tuesday, September 25   7:30 p.m.  The Commons, Spooner Hall  

Humanities Lecture Series: Frontline – Latinos and Immigration from a Woman’s Perspective, presented by Hall Center for the Humanities
Wednesday, September 26   10 a.m.  Hall Center Conference Hall 

Amal Kassir, presented by Missouri Western State University 
Wednesday, September 26 – 7 p.m. – Spratt 101

18th Biennial Edgar Snow Symposium », presented by the Edgar Snow Memorial Foundation
Thursday-Saturday, October 4-6, 2018 – InterContinental Hotel

5th Annual Celebration of International Friendship, presented by the Command and General Staff College Foundation
Thursday, October 4 – 7 p.m. – Kauffman Center for Performing Arts

JapanFest », presented by KC Japan Festival 
Saturday, October 6 – 10 a.m.-7 p.m. – Johnson County Community College

Russian Volga Tatar Culture and Cuisine Presentation », presented by Kansas City RU 
Sunday, October 7 – 1-3 p.m. – Irina's Gourmet Bakery

Tea & Talk, presented by Missouri Western State University International Student Services 
Wednesday, October 17 – 12-1:30 p.m. – Blum 210

Annual Economic Forecast, presented by the Kansas City Chamber of Commerce 
Friday, October 19 – 7:30-9 a.m.  Kansas City Downtown Marriott

47th Annual Mayor's UN Day Dinner », presented by the City of Kansas City, MO and the United Nations Association 
Monday, October 22 – 6-9:30 p.m. – InterContinental Hotel

International Cooking Class, presented by Missouri Western State University International Student Services 
Monday, October 22 – 5-6:30 p.m. – Commons (Res Hall)

Aida Cuevas and Mariachi Juvenil Tecalitlan, Totalmente Juan Gabriel », presented by Johnson County Community College
Friday, October 26 – 8 p.m. – Yardley Hall

What Do You Owe the World?, presented by the Jewish Community Center of Greater KC
Tuesday, October 30 – 7-9 p.m. – Jewish Community Campus

Unmasking the Spy: Intelligence Gathering », presented by the Robert J. Dole Institute of Politics
Tuesday, October 30 – 7-8:30 p.m. – Dole Institute 

International Cooking Class, presented by Missouri Western State University International Student Services 
Monday, November 5 – 5-6:30 p.m. – 
Commons (Res Hall)

Taste of Portugal »
Friday,  November 9 – 7-10 p.m. – The Culinary Center of Kansas City

Soweto Gospel Choir, Songs of the Free: Celebrating the Centennial Of Nelson Mandela's Birth », presented by Johnson County Community College
Friday, November 9 – 8 p.m. – Yardley Hall

Interfaith Thanksgiving Dinner », presented by Heartland Alliance of Divine Love 
Sunday, November 11 – 4-6:30 p.m. – St. Paul's Episcopal Church

Creating a Cultural Bridge, presented by JVS
Tuesday, November 13 – 5-6:30 p.m. – JVS

International Fair, presented by Missouri Western State University International Student Services
Wednesday, November 14 – 3-6 p.m. – Fulkerson Center 

Mid-America Trade Summit, presented by the International Trade Center
Wednesday-Thursday, November 14-15 – University of Missouri, Columbia

For more events, please see the 
KC Community Calendar »


Do you know of a volunteer opportunity that would allow IRC members to work with individuals from a variety of countries and cultures or that focuses on international topics or global issues? To have the opportunity considered for inclusion in the Volunteer Center or future IRC newsletters, please contact Matthew Hughes ».

These are just a sampling of international volunteer opportunities in Kansas City. Visit the Volunteer Center » for more one-time and ongoing opportunities to support international initiatives.

Great Art Needs Volunteer Help
Open Spaces is a historic arts exhibition in Kansas City that takes place citywide from Saturday, August 25, to Sunday, October 28. Learn more about it at ». The Open Spaces team is looking for volunteers to help bring the art to the people! Open Spaces offers a diverse schedule of events and performances, along with the exhibition of more than 40 great visual artworks throughout the city. Their team needs volunteers to sit with artworks or welcome the public at various events. This volunteer work is often calm and quiet, and Open Spaces can work with your schedule. It's a great way to meet people interested in the arts and to learn about contemporary art for yourself. Interested? Fill out this quick and easy form, and we'll contact you! »

The Simulations Center Seeks Student Volunteers for World Crisis Simulation Testing
The Simulations Center is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization committed to reinforcing social studies concepts of economics, political science, and geography by providing hands-on learning experiences. During the World Crisis simulation, students participate as a country-team to re-establish international trade with other student country-teams and then are challenged by a global economic or political crisis. The Simulations Center is looking for high school students interested in government, international affairs, business/economics, or journalism to participate in our testing as we grow World Crisis from a classroom experience into a large multi-school simulation event. Please contact Ray Barbosa ( to sign up or to learn more.


Learn a Language with Pronunciator 
Brought to you by the Kansas City Public Library, Pronunciator offers phrase tutorials for over 80 languages, including ESL. Courses are available for English speakers or for native speakers of 50 other languages. Learn on a desktop or access from your mobile device. 
Click here to access this resource ».

World Affairs Councils of America National Conference: Braving the New World Order
For nearly three decades, the WACA National Conference has brought World Affairs Council leaders and members to engage with top government officials, diplomats, business executives, innovators, journalists, educators, and students on the most pressing global issues and policy choices that impact our lives. By attending this year's WACA Conference in Washington, DC, you will benefit from: Expert opinions, timely insights, and audience dialogue about the United States' role in the world Access to extraordinary speakers, thought leaders, and ambassadors available for local Council programming Bipartisan, diverse, and inclusive perspectives on the Administration’s "America First" philosophy Visits to think tanks and embassies, networking receptions, and dinners Professional development, leadership training, mentoring, and peer-to-peer networking. 
Click here for more information and to register ».