Mayor Eric Johnson announces hiring of Chief of Protocol and International Relations

DALLAS — Mayor Eric Johnson on Friday announced the hiring of Beth Huddleston as his office’s new Chief of Protocol and International Relations.

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, Mayor Johnson began new efforts to increase the city’s international stature. Now, Huddleston will oversee those efforts and advise the mayor on opportunities to strengthen ties to other countries.

“I am thrilled to work with Mayor Johnson and his staff in this new role,” Huddleston said. “Dallas is well positioned to become a bigger player in international diplomacy and trade, and I look forward to helping the city reach its full potential.”

Beth Huddleston

Huddleston will be able to draw on three decades of experience in global affairs. Most recently, Huddleston was the executive vice president for the World Affairs Council of Dallas/Fort Worth and was responsible for their public/private partnerships. She had oversight of Dallas Protocol, a partnership between the City of Dallas and the World Affairs Council, and the International Visitor Leadership Program of the U.S. Department of State. Both programs sought to connect Dallas with the world through hosting international leaders, showcasing Dallas to international visitors and planning inbound and outbound trade missions.

Prior to joining the World Affairs Council, Huddleston was the director of the International Trade Center SBDC, a partnership program of the then-Dallas County Community College and the Small Business Administration. She was responsible for training Dallas-area small businesses to enter global markets. During that time, she was a member and past chair of the North Texas District Export Council, which was a position appointed by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce. The organization received the prestigious President’s “E” Award for Excellence in Export Service during her tenure.

Like Mayor Johnson, Huddleston is a native Dallasite. She earned a B.A. in Spanish and English Literature from Vanderbilt University and a M.A. in Latin American Studies from Georgetown University. She speaks Spanish and receives ongoing training in the art of diplomacy and international protocol.

In her new role, Huddleston will report directly to the mayor. She will officially begin work Monday.

With COVID-19 vaccinations ramping up and case numbers declining, Mayor Johnson has asked her to work with the Mayor’s International Advisory Council (MIAC) to develop plans to attract international businesses and diplomatic outposts.

“Beth Huddleston is a highly respected veteran of international affairs,” Mayor Johnson said. “She has been an invaluable asset to the City of Dallas for years. She will make an excellent addition to our team as we work to take Dallas to the next level on the international stage.”

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