U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom officials pose for a photo with a delegation from the U.S. Baha'i Office of Public Affairs on March 12, 2013. The delegation met with USCIRF officials to share personal stories about family members and friends who are currently in prison and provide information about the recent intensified persecution of the Iranian Baha’i community.On February 12, 2015, Donna Hakimian, of the U.S. Baha'i Office of Public Affairs, along with various other representatives from Georgetown University, Karamah, and IMA World Health spoke at the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace & World Affairs on the subject of "Religious Communities and their Responses to Sexual Violence.”Representatives from 17 religious organizations, including Peter Adriance of the U.S. Bahá'í Office of Public Affairs, (back row, second from left) met with Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Gina McCarthy on November 19, 2014, to highlight the support and work of the faith community on the rules to regulate carbon emissions from power plants. (Photo by Eric Vance)A delegation from the U.S. Baha’i Office of Public Affairs visits with Illinois Senator Mark Kirk in his office on March 12, 2013 to thank him for the work he and his office have done on behalf of the Iranian Baha’i community. The delegation included individuals who have family members or friends currently imprisoned in Iran.Ambassador Tiina Intelmann, President of the Assembly of States Parties International Criminal court, speaks with U.S. Baha’i Office of Public Affairs representatives after an International Criminal Court briefing held on July 23, 2014 at the Rayburn House Office Building.Dr. Chloe Schwenke, vice president of global programs at Freedom House, speaks during a press conference held on March 13, 2013 to mark the introduction into the House and Senate of resolutions condemning the persecution of the Baha’i community in Iran. On May 6, 2013, Rainn Wilson of NBC's hit sitcom, The Office, moderated an event held at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace to commemorate the fifth anniversary of the imprisonment of the "Yaran-i-Iran," or "Friends of Iran," the former seven member ad hoc leadership group of the Baha'is in Iran. Rosita Riazati, BBC producer of the film "The Baha'is in Iran," answers a question during a screening of the film at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace on September 12, 2013.
The U.S. Baha’i Office of Public Affairs (OPA) represents the U.S. Baha’i community in its relationships with the U.S. government, non-governmental organizations, the media, and the broader public.
The Office has three primary areas of focus: Gender Equality and the Advancement of Women, Human Rights, which includes the defense of the rights of Baha’is in Iran, and Sustainable Development. OPA also has a satellite office located in New York that represents the U.S. Baha’i community to the United Nations and engages with the UN and civil society on a number of issues.
In these and other areas, OPA engages in public education, dialogue, awareness-raising, media outreach, and policy advocacy. Informed by Baha’i teachings and principles, OPA seeks to contribute to the betterment of society and to promote the development of a just, unified, and sustainable world.