As a tumultuous 2018 comes to a close, I want to share with you my thoughts on the Pacific Council's progress this year, within the context of broader global change.
In light of our commitment to impact we are proud to see a number of our members occupying senior policy-making positions in Washington and abroad. As an organization we continue to maintain a deep commitment to impartiality and non-partisanship. At the same time, we remain committed to integrity, the rule of law, democracy, freedom of speech, human rights and dignity, vibrant and unfettered journalism, and equity. We are proudly committed to globalism; as a community we believe that America's global leadership is in favor of American interests, that immigration is positive for the United States, and that the cultural and human values that make the American experiment so special are not obsolete.
The values that define the Pacific Council are a reflection of our home in Southern California. Los Angeles is not abstractly committed to globalism; it is its very embodiment. The city reflects our status as the capital of the Pacific Rim and is the second city for more nationalities than I can easily enumerate. Los Angeles is the heartland of individual freedom, creativity, innovation, and optimism. If I had to pinpoint our proudest accomplishment it would be that the Pacific Council continues to thrive by providing our members values-driven, respectful, and non-partisan insight into our global political ecosystem. We have you to thank for demanding this of us and for helping us make this a reality.
With these values in mind, I ask that you consider supporting our continued efforts by making an end-of-year gift to our Pay it Forward Annual Giving campaign, which focuses on providing international affairs opportunities to underrepresented voices, the people who should help shape the future of global policy.
In 2018, global stability continued to deteriorate with the decline of international agreements and organizations, a global rise in divisive and xenophobic nationalism, an increased tempo of trade wars, a deeply unsettled European Union, an increasingly aggressive Russia, continued deterioration in U.S. relations with China, and an unjustified warming of U.S. relations with Pyongyang. The Gulf Cooperation Council remains in tatters, Africa continues to be neglected by the West if not by China, and there is talk of nuclear rearmament bereft of any obvious strategic value to anyone.
As all of this emerged, the Pacific Council continued to engage and inform our members by helping them to make sense of this rapidly changing world. This year we convened our inaugural Global Los Angeles Summit and PolicyWest conferences. We introduced new modes of programming to keep pace with the preferences of our members.
We now offer a popular virtual book club, skills-building webinars, geopolitical simulation exercises, and a new initiatives department that has innovated with activities focused on global water scarcity and Mexico. These new programs, which were particularly popular among our emerging leaders, were made possible by the generous donations of our annual supporters.
The Pacific Council is committed to making certain the next generation of decision makers genuinely reflects our society at large. In 2018 we dispatched a delegation of emerging leaders to Mexico City, and we are strengthening our Board and membership through the inclusion of future leaders. I consider it central to the Pacific Council's mission to serve as an incubator for the next generation of international affairs decision makers.
As the 2018 calendar year comes to an end, I hope that you will consider making a donation to the Pacific Council's Pay it Forward campaign to support emerging leaders. With your support, we can continue to have a significant impact on international issues with integrity and wisdom in 2019 and beyond.
I would like to thank you for being an important and valued part of our member community and I look forward to seeing you in the new year.
With my best wishes for a healthy and happy holiday season,
Dr. Jerrold D. Green
President & CEO
Pacific Council on International Policy