Frequently Asked Questions
Founded in 1964, the Society of Fellows (SOF) originally consisted of 33 members who met in Elizabeth and Walter Paepcke’s living room in Aspen, Colorado in order to strengthen the humanities to deepen personal development and provide wiser direction to society. Today, the Society of Fellows is a national community of diverse, distinguished leaders who sustain the values-based work of the Aspen Institute.
As a member of the Society of Fellows, you join a community of like-minded thought leaders whose intellectual curiosity and commitment to national and global impact drive the work of the Aspen Institute forward. Members receive invitations to more than 50 exclusive events every year in Aspen, New York City, San Francisco, Washington, D.C., and other locations around the country. Members receive priority registration to the Aspen Institute’s premier public events, including Aspen Ideas Festival and Aspen Security Forum. Members have access to concierge-style event registration and receive the SOF newsletter which contains information about all upcoming Aspen Institute programs. Additional privileges are available at higher levels of membership.
The work of the Aspen Institute is more critical now than ever before, because it uniquely convenes inclusive conversations with diverse thinkers and practitioners to solve the world’s greatest challenges. Members of the Society of Fellows help to ensure this work continues, and they are fully engaged with it through member-exclusive events curated specifically for them.
Members of the Society of Fellows provide vital unrestricted support that advances the Aspen Institute’s work to realize a free, just, and equitable society.
All SOF memberships are entirely tax-deductible. Tax receipts will be mailed to you following receipt of your donation.
The Society of Fellows offers multiple ways for corporate executives and senior leadership to become involved. Please contact the Society of Fellows team to discuss the menu of benefit options available to corporate supporters. Corporations can also become involved as regional or national underwriters of SOF events.
Please contact the SOF team at (970) 544-7980 to learn more about how to provide a membership as a gift.
Membership donations can be made via check, wire transfer, stock transfer, or online donation. Donations can also be made through a Donor Advised Fund or private foundation. The Aspen Institute tax ID is 84-0399006.
Checks can be made payable to “The Aspen Institute” and mailed to 1000 N. Third St., Aspen, CO 81611. You can also join or renew your membership by emailing email@example.com, calling (970) 544-7980.
SOF events are hosted in Aspen, CO; Los Angeles, CA; Palm Beach, FL; New York, NY; San Francisco, CA; and Washington, D.C., and other locations around the country.
The types of events include, but are not limited to:
Digital Discussion: Online digital programs featuring leading experts where participants can type and submit questions to the presenters.
Discussion Reception: Discussion hosted in a larger home or private venue that feature leading experts in their fields. These programs offer members time to mingle and connect over refreshments before and after the discussion and are larger in attendance than a dialogue.
Forum: Half-day program offering multiple panel discussions on various aspects of a given topic, providing a more profound exploration of today’s most pertinent issues.
Luncheon: Lunch-hour program featuring leading experts in their fields.
Dinner: Specially curated dinner for members and special guests featuring leading experts in their fields.
Symposium: Multi-day, roundtable discussions that are moderated by leading experts and provide an in-depth exploration of a given topic from arts and culture to foreign and domestic policy.
Information about upcoming events will be sent to all SOF members via the bi-weekly newsletter (which is weekly from June to August). We recommend adding the SOF team email address, firstname.lastname@example.org, to your email contacts to ensure that our invitations and newsletter do not go to a spam folder. If you are a current member and have not received our newsletter, please contact us at email@example.com or call 970.544.7980.
SOF members at the President’s Society ($10,000) level and above are welcome to bring a guest to events when capacity allows. For more information about how many guests you are entitled to bring, please reference the membership benefits.
Please email all program ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org. Since we receive a high volume of suggestions, we will only reach out to those whose ideas have been selected.
The SOF team is available to be reached Monday through Friday form 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. MST at 970.544.7980 or email@example.com.
Our Regional Directors will help you engage with the Institute in ways that align with your interests. Contact your regional representative for more information. If you don’t know your regional representative, please email SOF@aspeninstitute.org or call 970.544.7980.