Michael Chertoff is chairman and founder of the Chertoff Group, a security and risk management advisory firm with offices in Washington, DC. Chertoff is also senior of counsel at Covington & Burling LLP’s Washington, DC, office and a member of the White Collar Defense and Investigations practice group.
Previously Chertoff served as secretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. As secretary, he led a 218,000 person department with a budget of $50 billion to develop and implement border security and immigration policy, promulgate homeland security regulation, and spearhead a national cyber security strategy. He also served on the National Security and Homeland Security Councils, and on the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States.
Prior to his appointment to President George W. Bush’s cabinet, he served from 2003 to 2005 on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. Before becoming a federal judge, Chertoff was the assistant attorney general for the criminal division of the U.S. Department of Justice. In that position, he oversaw the investigation of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, and formed the Enron Task Force.
Chertoff’s career includes more than a decade as a federal prosecutor, including service as U.S. attorney for the district of New Jersey, first assistant U.S. attorney for the district of New Jersey, and assistant U.S. attorney for the southern district of New York. As a federal prosecutor, Chertoff investigated and personally prosecuted significant cases of political corruption, organized crime, and corporate fraud.
Chertoff currently serves on the board of directors of Noblis, Delta Risk, and Edgewood Networks. He serves on the Advisory Boards of Sonavation, Securonix, Reporty, V Armour, and Lumina. He is also chairman of the board of directors of BAE Systems, Inc., the U.S.-based subsidiary of BAE Systems plc. Chertoff was first appointed to the Inc. board in March 2010 and appointed chairman in May 2012. He is also a member of a number of nonprofit advisory boards, including Freedom House, American Action Forum, the Global Commission on the Stability of Cyberspace, and Global Security & Privacy by Design.
Chertoff is a magna cum laude graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. From 1979-1980, he served as a clerk to Supreme Court Justice William Brennan, Jr. Chertoff has received numerous awards including the Department of Justice Henry E. Petersen Memorial Award (2006); the Department of Justice John Marshall Award for Trial of Litigation (1987); NAACP Benjamin L. Hooks Award for Distinguished Service (2007); European Institute Transatlantic Leadership Award (2008); and two honorary doctorates. His trial experiences have been featured in over half a dozen books and many news articles.