On May 16th, we at Global Ties KC paused from our busy days to celebrate 65 years of shaping foreign policy in Kansas City. Throughout our many years as an organization, we have been fortunate to bring over 200,000 international visitors to the Heartland. Along the way, we have come to know so many local leaders, entrepreneurs, and incredible Kansas Citians. To commemorate this exciting event, we were joined by the countless individuals that have been an integral part of our organization’s success, including board members, staff, local resources, and community members.
Amidst food, drink, and lively conversation, folks were able to unwind last Thursday and meet other Kansas Citians with a passion for citizen diplomacy. All the while, we heard from our Global Ties KC staff and Board President, Mr. Paul Weida, as they spoke about the significant role Global Ties KC plays in our community. To that end, our Executive Director, Courtney Brooks, presented the Barbara Dolci Scholarship to local high school student, Monterey Mecham, for her dedication to global affairs.
KEYNOTE SPEAKER: ANNE GRIMES
DIRECTOR OF THE OFFICE OF INTERNATIONAL VISITORS (OIV) IN THE BUREAU OF EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL AFFAIRS
We were also joined by Ms. Anne Grimes, a career member of the Senior Foreign Service and the current manager of the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP), the State Department’s longest running exchange program. Anne spoke of how international exchange has shaped so many lives, citing how folks coming to Kansas City felt empowered and inspired to be local and national leaders once they returned home. This was a testament to the power Kansas Citians have when they bring compassion and hospitality to international affairs. We are so thankful that Anne was able to share these stories with our guests.
While this celebration was certainly one to remember, we at Global Ties KC could not be more thrilled about what’s next for our organization. We are more committed than ever to utilizing the power of citizen diplomacy and person-to-person contact to influence international relations. Moving forward, we want to truly focus on expanding our impact on local community. Therefore, not only are we excited to unveil our new tagline, Bringing the World to You, but we will also be growing our impact evaluation and storytelling tools in the coming months.
For those of you who have shared a meal with an international visitor, or who have met with delegations to discuss pressing policy issues, thank you. Your generosity and warmth is what our international visitors remember about KC; you all have played a pivotal role in sending a bit of our Midwest spirit overseas. Global Ties KC will ensure this spirit is never lost in our organization, and we are thrilled to be able to keep bringing the world to you.