Bureau of Public Affairs

The Bureau of Public Affairs (PA) engages domestic and international media to communicate timely and accurate information with the goal of furthering U.S. foreign policy and national security interests as well as broadening understanding of American values. In carrying out its mission, PA employs a wide range of media platforms, provides historical perspective, and conducts public outreach. The Bureau is led by Assistant Secretary and Department Spokesperson John Kirby.

The PA Bureau vigorously advances the State Department's mission to inform the American people and global audiences through a variety of ways, including:

  • Strategic and tactical communications planning to advance America’s foreign policy interests;
  • Conducting press briefings for domestic and foreign press corps;
  • Pursuing media outreach, enabling Americans everywhere to hear directly from key Department officials through local, regional, and national media interviews;
  • Managing the State Department's website at state.gov and developing web pages with up-to-date information about U.S. foreign policy;
  • Using social media and other modern technologies to engage the public;
  • Overseeing the State Department's six international Regional Media Hubs, which serve as overseas platforms for engagement of foreign audiences via the internet and broadcast and print media;
  • Answering questions from the public about current foreign policy issues by phone, email, letter, or through social media;
  • Arranging town meetings and scheduling speakers to visit universities, chambers of commerce, and communities to discuss U.S. foreign policy and why it is important to all Americans;
  •  Producing and coordinating audio-visual products and services in the U.S. and abroad for the public, the press, the Secretary of State, and Department bureaus and offices; and
  • Preparing historical studies on U.S. diplomacy and foreign affairs matters.