U.S. Department of State

Founding Date
Parent Entity

The U.S. Department of State is an executive division of the U.S. federal government responsible for carrying out U.S. foreign policy. The U.S. Department of State manages America’s relationships with foreign governments, international organizations, and the people of other countries. Major responsibilities include United States representation abroad, foreign assistance, foreign military training programs, countering international crime, and a wide assortment of services to U.S. citizens and foreign nationals seeking entrance to the United States.



  • The Department of State advises the President and leads the nation in foreign policy issues. 

  • It is the oldest of the federal departments and the president’s principal means of conducting treaty negotiations and forging agreements with foreign countries.

  • The DOS also negotiates treaties and agreements with foreign entities and represents the United States at the United Nations. 

  • The DOS aims to protect and promote U.S. security, prosperity, and democratic values and shape an international environment in which all Americans can thrive.


  • Since its founding in 1789, The U.S. Department of State has grown significantly over the years.

  • Their role has changed in response to changing global circumstances.

  • At one time, the DOS was responsible for a number of domestic duties ranging from publication of the census to control of copyright to management of the Mint.

  • Now, they work to fight terrorism, protect U.S. interests abroad, and implement foreign policy initiatives while building a more free, prosperous, and secure world.

  • Today, the workforce includes some 13,000 members of the Foreign Service, 11,000 Civil Service employees, and 45,000 locally employed staff at more than 270 diplomatic missions worldwide.