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Expedition leader

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This article is about the current version of DF.
Note that some content may still need to be updated.

Expedition Leader
Room requirements  
Office None
Quarters None
Dining room None
Tomb None
Furniture requirements
Chests None
Cabinets None
Weapon racks None
Armor stands None
Mandates None
Demands None
Arrival conditions
  • Meet with foreign dignitaries
  • Talk with unhappy citizens

The expedition leader is an administrative position automatically filled on embark. It is the job of this official to speak with, and console or simply hear the complaints of unhappy dwarves, and to entertain foreign diplomats. Once the population reaches 50, a mayor will be elected and the expedition leader position will be removed.

An expedition leader or mayor is required to appoint other administrators; they are also able to appoint replacements for elected positions, including their own, or remove current appointments, leaving the position empty. Should your leader suffer an unfortunate accident or be removed, you will have to wait for a new leader to be elected to be able to appoint any administrators; this can happen within a day. However, if the civilization is dead, the election will never happen and you will be unable to appoint a new leader or other officials.

There is a certain set of skills that are relevant for an expedition leader. There are also certain personality traits that influence whether experience is gained in the skill whatsoever. Furthermore, there are soul attributes that affect the skills and other skills that affect these same attributes (cross-training); the ones relevant for an expedition leader are as follows:

Skill (relevant for Expedition Leader) Personality Trait (needed to gain Social Skill) Attribute (affected by Social Skill)
Body Soul
Social - Other Consoler Straightforwardness (Honesty) > 39 Linguistic Ability
Social Awareness
Pacifier Cooperation (Compromising) > 39 Linguistic Ability
Social Awareness
Social - Broker Comedian Self-consciousness (Neurosis) < 76 Agility Creativity
Kinesthetic Sense
Linguistic Ability
Conversationalist Friendliness (Reserved) > 39 Linguistic Ability
Social Awareness
Flatterer Straightforwardness (Honesty) < 61 Linguistic Ability
Social Awareness
Liar < 40 Creativity
Linguistic Ability
Social Awareness
Intimidator Cooperation (Compromising) < 61 Agility Kinesthetic Sense
Linguistic Ability
Judge of intent Intuition
Social Awareness
Negotiator Linguistic Ability
Social Awareness
Persuader Assertiveness (Leadership) > 39 Linguistic Ability
Social Awareness

The better match with the skills, traits and attributes in the table, the better an expedition leader the dwarf will be; try to avoid traits that halt experience gain for a relevant skill, otherwise time will be lost training a dwarf that will never get better at that skill.


  • It has long been debated whether their being able to replace or remove elected positions including themselves is a bug.Bug:2512
  • If the fortress population drops to 1 child or insane dwarf, can't appoint or elect nobles when migrants arrive.Bug:5299
  • After passing the 50-dwarf-threshold, election for Mayor doesn't happen until any change is made to nobles screen.Bug:8514
  • An empty expedition leader position cannot be refilled in a dead civilization and thus appointed positions also cannot be filled.Bug:11559
Military Ranks