Exchange Matters / February 26, 2021

A Message from the Office of International Visitors

By Anne E. Grimes, Director, Office of International Visitors, U.S. Department of State

The U.S. Department of State remains committed to advancing diversity through International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) exchanges. One of the core principles of the IVLP is to show multiple perspectives on the many issues our country faces. The Office of International Visitors (OIV) knows that our partner organizations strive to reflect the diversity of the United States by introducing visitors to a broad range of speakers, communities, and cultural activities so that our visitors reach independent and informed opinions on important issues in the United States and abroad.

As we look to the future of IVLP, the events of the past year compel us all to reevaluate and enhance our efforts with respect to diversity, equity, and inclusion within our own organizations and in our programming. To that end, we strongly support the launch by Global Ties U.S. of a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Working Group comprised of members of the Network (CBMs, NPAs, and OIV) to look at our current practices and make recommendations to improve practices that promote diversity. The U.S. Department of State is committed to being a part of a solution that advances racial justice and equity and further showcases the rich tapestry of our country’s experiences to our international visitors. The Office of International Visitors looks forward to working together with all its partners on these issues.