January 2003: Annual Activity Report

January 16, 2003


The United States Advisory Commission on Public Diplomacy
April 2002 through January 2003



Introduction

On November 28, 2001, Congress enacted legislation that restored the expiring authority of the United States Advisory Commission on Public Diplomacy. At this stage, the Commission lacked any staff and sufficient funding.

In April 2002, the Commission obtained necessary staff to enable it to fulfill its mandate to communicate and report to the President, Secretary of State, Congress and the American people on public diplomacy issues. The Commission has embarked on an aggressive campaign to explain, support and advise on key global communication efforts to inform, influence and engage foreign audiences.

With its modest operating budget of $69,000, the Commission has successfully built public will and interest in public diplomacy by writing relevant reports, applying research, advising Congressional and Bush Administration leaders, giving a plethora of media interviews from around the globe and engaging academic and private sector audiences from across the country.

Today, the Commission is truly fulfilling its goal to serve as a citizen's advisory panel that actively encourages input from all sectors of government, the private sector and everyday people.

Engaging the Media
In an initiative to immediately have an impact on the emerging national discourse on public diplomacy, the Commissioners sought to make media outreach a fundamental part of their efforts. Since April 2002, Commissioners have completed more than 100 media appearances. This exceeds all combined media citations the Commission has received in its prior 54-year history.

The Commission's media strategy initially focused on the trade publications that cover public diplomacy and public relations. This helped to solicit interest in the Commission from major press outlets and relevant parties in the communications industry. Commissioner Maria Elena Torano inaugurated this initiative when she attended the first-ever global conference for State Department public affairs officers. Although this event was closed to the press, Commissioner Torano briefed members of the media who could not gain access. In her comments, she strongly endorsed the importance of this conference, which resulted in several positive articles being written.

As the year developed, the interest in the Commission gradually increased. Chairman Harold C. Pachios made himself readily available for media commentary. The Chairman's insight provided a service to members of the press who only recently began to cover public diplomacy. Over the past year, he has regularly served as a source for the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, PR Week, BBC News and Deutche Welle radio.

Additionally, Vice Chairman Charles Dolan has become a regular face on Washington's talk show circuit. By appearing on MSNBC, the BBC, C-SPAN, and ABC's Nightline, Dolan is bringing a positive perspective and understanding of public diplomacy into the living rooms of everyday Americans.

The Commission's 2002 report, Building Public Diplomacy through a Reformed Structure and Additional Resources, received broad coverage throughout the print and electronic media from diverse and prominent outlets such as the Associated Press, Al Jazeera TV, Los Angeles Times, Daily Variety, Ad Age, The New York Times, The Hollywood Reporter and the Christian Science Monitor. In entirety, more than 30 U.S. newspapers, several international wire services, six major radio outlets and three television networks covered the event.

As a means to communicate with the greater public, the Commission continues to appear regularly in the media through op-eds and interviews. When possible, the Commission arranges for its more prominent meetings to be carried live on C-SPAN, enabling all Americans to play a part in the Commission's important role. A summary of the Commission's media interviews are included at the end of this report.

Creating a Public Forum for Public Diplomacy
Over the past year, the Commission worked to make its hearings truly accessible to all interested parties. By promoting relevant issues, publicizing meetings, reaching out to decision makers and soliciting input from the public, the Commission has successfully garnered significant interest in its hearings.

In the Commission's prior history, it was unlikely that any outside guests would attend any of its functions. Now, representatives of key embassies, Congress, corporations, think tanks and the academic community all attend. This has resulted in additional perspectives and thinking that have entered the Commission's information flow.

Working to explore and promote emerging issues in public diplomacy, the Commission has sought input from leading experts, such as former foreign affairs and intelligence staffers, members of Congress, academics and public relations experts. These new perspectives provide important and diverse public diplomacy concepts.

Informing Congress
Even though the Commission has been active in its official capacity advising State Department and international broadcasting officials, it also serves an integral role as a bridge to Congress by providing a candid and informed perspective on America's public diplomacy programs. The Commission makes its research and meetings readily accessible to Congressional staffers, the Government Accounting Office and members themselves. This provides an indispensable insider's look into our global communications capability for rank and file Representatives and Senators.

Over the past year, Chairman Pachios and Director Matt J. Lauer have individually briefed dozens of Congressmen and Congressional staffers, as well as addressing a variety of caucuses.

In October 2002, Chairman Pachios testified before the Subcommittee on National Security, Veterans Affairs and International Relations. The purpose of the hearing was to examine how U.S. foreign policy reflects an understanding of Arab social and political thought and the role of Islam in the discourse of the "Arab street." Additionally, witnesses discussed the adequacy and appropriateness of the U.S. communications efforts in light of the Commission's recent report.

The Commission continues to work with Congress and serve as a resource to all of its members.

Going Beyond Government to the Private Sector and International Audiences
In a new and entrepreneurial capacity, the Commission is seeking to serve as a conduit of ideas from the private sector to the government on public diplomacy matters.

The Commission views that the academic, private sector and international communities have relevant and significant ideas to contribute to public diplomacy. The government can only access these concepts by reaching out to experts who could potentially serve as resources. The Commission provides this function.

Chairman Harold Pachios has addressed academic audiences at colleges and universities across the United States, including Princeton University, Wellesley College, the University of Virginia, and Syracuse University. Additionally, Chairman Pachios has addressed the Salzburg Seminar in Austria and chaired a broadcasting forum at a Canadian symposium on public diplomacy.

Not only did the Commission issue its own recommendations to the government for the improvement of public diplomacy concerns, it provided a bulk of the research for a major report issued by the Council on Foreign Relations, Public Diplomacy, and the War on Terrorism: A Strategy for Reform. Although the specific recommendations made in the report were the combined efforts of the working group to the Council, much of the background data, historical information and supporting arguments were supplied by the Commission's research efforts led by the Commission's former Executive Director Bruce Gregory.

The Commission also is bringing resources from the private sector into the government. In November 2002, Chairman Pachios and Mr. Lauer traveled to Los Angeles to interview several major figures from the entertainment and media industries. The purpose of the information-gathering trip was to ascertain if the industry's interest and skills, as related to public diplomacy, merit greater study and examination by the Commission and involvement by the U.S. Government as a whole. As a result of the fact-finding trip, the Commission is connecting appropriate individuals to provide needed resources and private sector expertise for the State Department's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and the Broadcasting Board of Governors.

Additionally, in the summer 2002 the Commission partnered with the RAND Corporation to announce the think tank's Center for Domestic and International Health Security. The Center's Global Health Initiative is designed to ensure that health becomes an important component of U.S. foreign policy and is used to improve America's image abroad, defuse anger and resentment by people in the Middle East and other regions against the United States, and attack some of the root causes of terrorism. The Commission provided needed support for the founding of the Center.

By engaging the private sector, the Commission is bringing new ideas, resources and perspectives to the nation's global communications front.

Conclusion
Utilizing the power of the bully pulpit provided to the Commissioners through their appointments by the President, the U.S. Advisory Commission on Public Diplomacy has managed to provide key information and serve as a resource to the American people, Congress and the Bush Administration. This has all been accomplished with a professional staff of one and an operating budget of less than $70,000.

With its singular objective to improve public diplomacy, the Commission will continue to expand is efficacy by reaching out to every sector of society for communications ideas and resources. The Commission continues to believe that although additional millions of dollars can improve public diplomacy, it is really new thinking that will make the greatest positive change.

Print Interviews (partial list)
OUTLET SUBJECT SOURCE DATE AUDIENCE
Brand Strategy P.D. general Pachios Interview Jan. 2 25,000*
The New York Times Shared Values Campaign Dolan Interview Dec. 18 1,194,491
PR Week P.D. general Pachios Interview Dec. 16 60,000*
The Washington Monthly Hollywood and P.D. Pachios and Lauer Interview Dec. 1 18,000
The Washington Times Polling Manilow Interview Dec. 9 103,505
The Observer (Notre Dame, Indiana) Roemer Internship Press Release Nov. 26 30,000*
South Bend Tribune (Indiana) Roemer Internship Press Release Nov. 24  
South Bend Tribune (Indiana) Roemer Internship Press Release Nov. 23  
P.R. Week P.D. general Pachios Interview Nov. 18 60,000*
Portland Press Herald Congressional Hearing Pachios Testimony Oct. 10 140,000
CommonDreams.org Commission Report Pachios Interview Oct.10 N/A
The Washington Times Congressional Hearing Pachios Testimony Oct. 8 103,505
The Hollywood Reporter Hollywood and P.D. Pachios and Dolan Interview Sept. 24 36,200
Christian Science Monitor Commission Report Commissioner
Comments
Sept. 24 90,000
Ad Age Commission Report Commissioner
Comments
Sept. 23 38,000
NewsDay Commission Report Commissioner
Comments
Sept. 23 571,283
Los Angeles Times Commission Report Commissioner
Comments
Sept. 21 1,153,706
O'DwyerPR.com Commission Report Dolan Comments Sept. 20  
Los Angeles Times P.D. general Commission Report Sept. 20 1,153,706
The Hotline White House Office Press Release Sept. 19 5,000
Daily Herald (Chicago) Commission Report Press Conference Sept. 19 125,000
Los Angeles Times Commission Report Press Conference Sept. 19 1,153,706
The Hollywood Reporter Commission Report Press Conference Sept. 19 36,200
Daily Variety Commission Report Press Conference Sept. 19 36,932
The Guardian (U.K.) Commission Report Press Conference Sept. 19 600,000
Grand Forks Herald Commission Report Wire Sept. 19 34,765
Myrtle Beach Sun News Commission Report Wire Sept. 19 47,485
Wilkes-Barre Times Leader Commission Report Wire Sept. 19 51,257
Columbus Ledger-Enquirer Commission Report Press Release Sept. 19 48,714
Miami Herald Commission Report Press Conference Sept. 19 356,128
Bradenton Herald Commission Report Wire Sept. 19 47,174
Belleville News-Democrat Commission Report Wire Sept. 19 53,742
Fort Wayne News-Sentinel Commission Report Wire Sept. 19 100,000*
Kansas City Star Commission Report Press Conference Sept. 19 275,735
Akron Beacon Journal Commission Report Wire Sept. 19 142,685
Lexington Herald Leader Commission Report Wire Sept. 19 114,427
Salon.com Commission Report Press Conference Sept. 18 N/A
The Financial Times Commission Report Pachios Interview Sept. 19 800,000
The Associated Press Commission Report Commissioner Comments Sept. 18 300,000
Deutsche Presse-Agentur Commission Report Commissioner Comments Sept. 18  
Agence France Presse Commission Report Commissioner Comments Sept 18  
CQ Weekly Broadcasting Pachios Interview Aug. 12 8,800
Manchester Guardian W.H. Office Commission Meeting Aug. 7 500,000*
Washington Post W.H. Office Commission Meeting July 30 811,925
New York Times CFR Report Manilow Dissent July 29 1,194,491
PR Week RAND Pachios Interview July 29 60,000*
The Forward RAND Pachios Interview July 26 25,000
Gannett News Service P.D. general Pachios Interview July 10 1,500,000
The Boston Herald Op-Ed Dolan Op-Ed June 29 263,113
The Nation P.D. general Pachios Interview June 15 112,360
O'Dwyers Weekly Fuller Commission Meeting May 25 20,000
O'Dwyers.com Fuller Commission Meeting May 25 10,000*
States News Service Commission Meeting Press Release May 23 800,000
PR Week Beers Pachios Interview May 6 60,000
O'Dwyers Weekly PAO Conf. Torano Interview April 15 10,000*
Africa News H.R. 3969 Press Release April 11 70,000
O'Dwyers.com Beers Lauer Interview April 3 10,000*

 

Broadcast Interviews (partial list)
OUTLET
SUBJECT
REFERENCE
DATE
AUDIENCE
 
 
     
Deutch Welle Radio
Shared Values Campaign
Pachios Interview Dec. 11 400,000*
Nachman / MSNBC
Polling
Dolan Interview Dec. 9 350,000
On the Record / BBC
P.D. general
Pachios Interview Oct. 20 5,000,000
World News Now / ABC
Shared Values Campaign
Dolan Interview Oct. 31 3,500,000
Nightline / ABC
Shared Values Campaign
Dolan Interview Oct. 30 2,000,000
BBC World Service
Broadcasting
Commission Report Oct. 15  
C-SPAN
P.D. general
Pachios Testimony Oct. 9 100,000
VOA Radio
Commission Report
Commissioner Comments Sept. 19 1,000,000*
E! TV (Entertainment Television)
Commission Report
Commissioner Comments Sept. 19 450,000
WSOC-TV (Charlotte, NC)
Commission Report
Commissioner Comments Sept. 18 45,500
Al Jazeera
Commission Report
Commissioner Comments Sept. 18 1,000,000
Donahue / MSNBC
U.S. Image
Dolan Interview Aug. 2 800,000
Wash. Journal /
C-SPAN
W.H. Office
Dolan Interview Jul. 31 60,000*
C-SPAN
Commission Meeting
All Commissioners May 24 35,000*
WAMU
(NPR, DC)
Commission Meeting
Pachios Quote May 24 25,000

 

Public Hearings and Investigative Reports
SUBJECT
GUEST(S)
COMMISSIONERS
DATE
OPEN REPORT OR HEARING
LOCATION
Defense PsyOps John Rendon All March 25 Yes Washington
Global Messaging State Dept. PAOs Torano April 8-10 Yes Washington
Latin American Youth and Public Diplomacy   Torano April    
Middle East Public Diplomacy Graham Fuller All May 25 Yes Washington
Health Security and Public Diplomacy RAND Corporation Pachios, Dolan, Roberts July 19 Yes Washington
Global Public Relations   All Sept. 19 Yes Washington
Shared Values Campaign Charlotte Beers All Oct. 7 No Washington
Hollywood and Public Diplomacy Bruce Ramer L. Chetwynd N. Pattiz C. Wick Pachios Nov. 7-9 Yes Los Angeles
Broadcasting Initiatives Ken Tomlinson All Dec. 12 No Washington

 

Speeches and Testimony
AUDIENCE
COMMISSIONER
DATE
LOCATION
Princeton University Pachios Apr. 24 Princeton, NJ
Salzburg Seminar Pachios Jun. 29 Salzburg, Austria
House New Democratic Caucus Pachios Sept. 18 Washington
House Subcommittee on National Security Pachios Oct. 8 Washington
Canadian Symposium on Public Diplomacy Pachios Oct. 24 London
Public Relations Society of America Dolan Oct. 31 Washington
Wellesley College Pachios Dec. 4 Wellesley, MA
American Council of Young Political Leaders Dolan Dec. 4 Washington
University of Virginia Pachios Dec. 12 Charlottesville, VA