Applying for Individual Membership


"The Council on Foreign Relations after ninety years remains at its core a membership organization."
- CFR President Richard N. Haass

Founded in 1921, the Council on Foreign Relations' ranks include many of the most prominent leaders in the foreign policy arena. With over 4,900 members, CFR's roster includes top government officials, renowned scholars, business executives, acclaimed journalists, prominent lawyers, and distinguished nonprofit professionals. The membership is divided almost equally among those living in New York, Washington, DC, and across the country and abroad, and it is a group unmatched in accomplishment and diversity in the field of international affairs.

Unparalleled Access in an Influential Forum

"The convening power of CFR is unparalleled, attracting the most prominent world leaders in government and business." - CFR Board Co-Chairs Carla A. Hills and Robert E. Rubin

Each year, CFR organizes nearly one thousand events, providing a nonpartisan forum for members to engage with and gain insight from experts in international affairs. Members have in-person access to world leaders, senior government officials, members of Congress, and prominent thinkers and practitioners in academia, policy, and business, many of whom are members themselves. These events include history-maker interviews, CEO forums, expert panel discussions, symposia, town halls, and film screenings. For members residing outside of New York and Washington, DC, CFR hosts foreign policy seminars in more than a dozen cities, local roundtables that build on expertise of area members and community leaders, a national book club series, webcasts, and a conference call series on current events.

Resources, Intellectual Capital, and Exchange of Ideas

Member resources include CFR's "think tank" and its wide array of publications and briefing materials. Study and advisory groups provide venues for experts to critique manuscripts and other content produced by our scholars. Members may participate in nonpartisan Independent Task Forces, which offer comprehensive policy prescriptions for major foreign policy issues facing the U.S. government. Members also receive a subscription to Foreign Affairs, CFR's flagship publication, and access to the magazine's full archives online, as well as exclusive content on and

For more information, please contact Membership at +1.212.434.9456 or