George F. Kennan Strategic Writing Award

Each year, AFSA is proud to participate in the graduation ceremonies at the National War College at Fort Lesley J. McNair in southwest Washington, D.C. At that ceremony, we are able to honor the graduate whose final paper has been chosen as the best essay on strategy or policy among students hailing from the Foreign Service at any agency.

The award is named for George F. Kennan, who was the first Deputy Commandant of the National War College, where he wrote his famous 1947 article, "The Sources of Soviet Conduct." AFSA is proud to recognize the important skill of excellent writing, in the tradition of Mr. Kennan. The award amount is $1,000, which is intended for the purchase of scholarly books.

For more information on this award, please contact AFSA's Awards and Scholarships Manager Theo Horn at or (202) 719-9705.

2021 Kennan Award Winner Valerie O’Brien with the Commandant of the National War College RDML Cedric E. Pringle (left) and AFSA President Eric Rubin (right).