Juan C. Zarate is chairman and co-founder of FDD’s Center on Economic and Financial Power. He is also the global co-managing partner and chief strategy officer for the global consulting firm, K2 Integrity, and the co-founder and chair of the board of Consilient, an innovative new fintech company.

Juan served as the deputy assistant to the president and deputy national security adviser for combating terrorism from 2005 to 2009, where he was responsible for developing and implementing the U.S. counterterrorism strategy. He was responsible for conceiving and leading major initiatives in the post-9/11 period, including the establishment of the Global Initiative to Combat Nuclear Terrorism.

He was the first-ever assistant secretary of the Treasury for terrorist financing and financial crimes. In this role, he led the post-9/11 anti-money laundering and sanctions regime expansion in the United States; helped develop the international standards for AML/CFT and proliferation finance; supervised the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FINCEN), the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), and the Treasury’s Executive Office for Asset Forfeiture (TEOAF); drove the innovative use of the Treasury’s national security-related powers; and ultimately led the establishment of the Office of Terrorism and Financial Intelligence (TFI). He was awarded the Treasury Medal.

Juan is a trustee, board member, and audit committee chair for Northwestern Mutual. He serves on the board of Guardian Space Technology Solutions, and since 2014, he has served as an independent adviser to Coinbase, the largest virtual asset service provider in the United States.

Juan is senior adviser at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) and the Class of 1971 senior fellow at West Point’s Combating Terrorism Center. He is currently an advisor to the National Security Institute, the Harvard National Security Journal, and FDD’s Center on Cyber and Technology Innovation and a life member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

He was a visiting lecturer in law at the Harvard Law School for eight years and authored Treasury’s War (2013) and Forging Democracy (1994).

Juan was appointed by Pope Francis twice to sit on the board of the Vatican’s Supervisory and Financial Information Authority; sat on the boards of Boston Dynamics and Cambridge Quantum Computing North America; and for seven years, he was the U.S. advisor on HSBC’s Financial System Vulnerabilities Committee and remains an advisor to HSBC’s Group Risk Committee. For 14 years, he was a senior national security analyst for CBS News and later NBC News.

Juan has served on multiple commissions and task forces, including the CSIS Commission on Countering Violent Extremism; the CSIS Commission on Strengthening America’s Health Security; the Council on Foreign Relations’ Independent Task Force on North Korea; the Center for a New American Security’s Future of U.S. Sanctions Task Force; and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Advisory Council Subcommittee on Countering Violent Extremism.

A former federal terrorism prosecutor prior to 9/11, Juan served on the prosecution teams in the East Africa bombings and USS Cole cases, among others. He is a magna cum laude graduate of Harvard College and a cum laude graduate of the Harvard Law School. At Harvard College, he won the John P. Reardon Award as the best male student athlete. He was a rotary scholar at the Universidad de Salamanca in Spain. In 2002, he was inducted into Mater Dei High’s School’s Ring of Honor.

of law at the Harvard Law School for eight years. 

Juan served as the deputy assistant to the president and deputy national security advisor for combating terrorism from 2005 to 2009, and was responsible for developing and implementing all aspects of the U.S. government’s counterterrorism strategy, including countering violent extremism and weapons of mass destruction. In this role, he was also responsible for U.S. strategy to address transnational threats, including international organized crime, hostage policy, and critical energy-infrastructure protection.

He was the first-ever assistant secretary of the treasury for terrorist financing and financial crimes, where he led domestic and international efforts to counter terrorist financing, the strategic use of financial power against America’s enemies, and the global hunt for Saddam Hussein’s assets. He is also a former federal prosecutor who served on terrorism-prosecution teams prior to 9/11, including the investigation of the USS Cole attack in Yemen.

Juan sits on several boards, including those of the Director of the National Counterterrorism Center and HSBC’s Financial Systems Vulnerabilities Committee, as well as the Coinbase Board of Advisors, the Vatican’s Financial Information Authority, Northwestern Mutual, Boston Dynamics, and the George Washington University’s Center for Cyber and Homeland Security.

He is author of Treasury’s War: The Unleashing of a New Era of Financial Warfare (2013), Forging Democracy (1994), and a variety of articles in The New York TimesWashington PostThe Wall Street JournalLos Angeles Times, the Washington Quarterly, and other publications. Juan is a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School and a former Rotary International Fellow at the University of Salamanca in Spain.

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