About Us

Our Mission

The Los Angeles World Affairs Council & Town Hall (LAWACTH) is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing global and civic engagement among Angelenos. By facilitating forward-thinking events with leading experts in international and domestic affairs, LAWACTH promotes an enriching dialogue for its members and the general public to understand the connection between Los Angeles and the world.


Our Work

As the largest speaker’s forum in Southern California, we deliver a robust slate of nonpartisan programming on local, national, and global affairs. Through each unique program, we work to cultivate an interactive forum — putting our audiences in direct conversation with world-renowned experts in international relations, government, business, philanthropy, education, medicine, the arts, the non-profit sector, technology, and more. Our programs push beyond today’s sensationalized, polarized, and one-dimension media environment to address pressing political questions though rigorous in-depth analysis and civil debate. Our programs move beyond sensational and polarized soundbites, to instead address today’s most pressing international and national issues through in-depth analysis, civil debate and exchange.

As a non-partisan organization, the Council does not endorse any point of view or take any institutional stand on issues of public debate. As an organization dedicated to furthering diverse understandings, we welcome a wide variety of opinions from our speakers and our members. 

Paul Kagame, President of Rwanda, addressing the Council in 2014

Our Programs

Live Digital Events

Mexican Ambassador to the U.S. Martha Bárcena Coqui (2020)

Since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic in March of 2020, we offer a diverse slate of live digital programs. Hosting 2-5 livestreams per week, with an average audience of 500 national and international attendees, bring  civic discussion into the homes of our growing virtual community — free of charge — as a commitment to providing accessible, high-quality information as a public service. In just one year, we have produced nearly 150 livestreams featuring foreign diplomats, international policy experts, sitting members of Congress, former White House Cabinet Members, elected officials across the state of California, and global leaders in business, technology, education and more.

In-Person Programs

LAWACTH typically hosts over 60 in-person programs each year to lively audiences of engaged thinkers. In-person events feature a dynamic array of breakfast, lunch, dinner, or evening receptions. Along with offering programs open to the public, LAWACTH hosts exclusive VIP receptions, roundtables, and film screenings for our members.

Special Programs

LAWACTH’s High School, Young Professionals, and Travel Programs offer special pathways to embody out our mission. Committed to nurturing the future generation of engaged citizens and leaders, our High School Program uniquely engages public high school students from across the Los Angeles county to participate in our programs. Our Young Professionals program brings together a diverse group of emerging leaders with a shared passion for the world, to advise their facilitation of education programs and professional networking events. The LAWACTH Travel Program puts our mission into action, bringing member delegations around the world for direct cultural exchange with global leaders, communities, and citizens.

Our Community

Our members and audiences come together each week to wrestle with today’s most pressing issues, with the common purpose of working to build a brighter tomorrow. What binds them together is a common interest in national and international affairs, a shared desire to examine important issues with in-depth analysis, and a willingness to hear opposing points of view with grace and civility. With our in-person programs, we serve the 33 million residents of the Los Angeles region, while our digital webinars unite engaged citizens across the United States and around the world. Our loyal members anchor this community — representing all ages, races, religions, and walks of life — they are a microcosm of the cultural diversity to be found in Los Angeles, the United States, and the world.

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