Established in 1967 by the sons and daughters of Thomas J. Watson, the Thomas J. Watson Meetings Program brings high-ranking U.S. and foreign government officials to CFR. The program funds meetings with U.S. and foreign leaders of cabinet rank or higher.
Thomas J. Watson (1874–1956)
Thomas J. Watson was a member of the Council on Foreign Relations from 1923 to 1956. He joined Computing-Tabulating-Recording Co. (CTR) as general manager in 1914, and became its president the following year. In 1924, CTR changed its name to International Business Machines (IBM). In 1937, he was named president of the International Chamber of Commerce. In 1949, Watson became chairman of IBM, a position he held until his death in 1956.