HISTORY
On March 26,1974 the Newport Council for International Visitors (Newport CIV) was incorporated as a charitable non-profit organization. The Founder was Barbara Faricy, a professional programmer for the Eisenhower Education Foundation in Washington for four and a half years before coming to Newport. Barbara recognized the potential of Newport for International Visitors. With a State grant of $2500 and donated office space in the Travers Building on Bellevue Avenue, the organization was born. It's mission was the concept of "Citizen Diplomat".

CIV grew into a full service agency for International Visitors sent to Newport by agencies in Washington, DC and New York. The Language Bank was formed and provided translators for local businesses and emergency services. Members were the first to serve as Host Families for the International Officers attending schools at the Naval Education and Training Command. This program has flourished over the years and members have been Citizen Diplomats to thousands of officers and their families attending the Naval Command College, Naval Staff College, International Surface Warfare Officers School and the Defense Institute for International Legal Studies.

In 1976, America was celebrating it's Independence Bicentennial and through Barbara's leadership, CIV played an important part in the Tall Ships. The New York Times that year covered the event and CIV's involvement. In 1980 CIV received the award for being the most outstanding of all one hundred CIV agencies across the country, handling more than 100 International Visitors a year. Barbara was later elected National NCIV president from 1981-1982 and Amb. Thomas E Estes, a Career Foreign Service Officer, became the second president of CIV. He had been Deputy Assistant Secretary of State and U.S. Ambassador to Upper Volta, now Burkina Faso, before his retirement here in Newport.

In the 1990's, CIV was handling approximately 30 International Visitors a year. A change in the Program made full participation difficult for the Newport members and their association with National CIV gradually tapered off. At the same time CIV saw a great expansion in their sponsorship of International Officers and representatives of UN members and Peacekeepers at Naval Station, Newport.

A special 1990-93 CIV program worth noting was an annual Christmas-New Year's Seminar for 10-16 students attending US universities at the graduate level under the auspices of the US Agency for International Development (USAID). This provided a "break" for students far from home during the Holidays. Each annual Seminar had a theme, and Newport officials, entrepreneurs and other citizens pitched in to cover such topics as tourism, small business, environmental management and local government - topics well suited for Newport.

One of CIV's most successful long running programs is the educational Great Decisions Discussion Series. This seminar series of eight globally "hot" topics selected annually by the Foreign Policy Association is presented by guest speakers from all walks of life, proficient in the topics, under CIV's sponsorship. The original seminars were fire-side discussions among members in each other's homes. As the reputation of the Great Decisions grew, bigger venues were needed and the seminars were held in such public locations as Salve Regina University, the Pell Center and frequently at the Newport Public Library.

Today the Newport Council for International Visitors remains actively involved in providing hospitality to visiting international professionals, working with the Newport County Convention and Visitors Bureau, Salve Regina University, World Affairs Council of RI, Naval Station, Newport and many other local businesses, civic organizations and citizens to promote the benefits of Citizen Diplomacy on the local level.