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Thursday, February 9, 2023

Senate Confirms Kenneth Wainstein to Lead DHS Intelligence and Analysis

Melissa Smislova, who served as Acting Under Secretary for I&A, will continue to serve at I&A as Acting Principal Deputy Under Secretary.

Kenneth L. Wainstein was confirmed by a 63-35 Senate vote Tuesday to be Under Secretary for Intelligence and Analysis at the Department of Homeland Security.

Wainstein was nominated to the post in November. In a statement Tuesday, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said he is “incredibly proud” to welcome the new I&A leader to the department.

“Ken is an extraordinarily dedicated and talented public servant with decades of government experience during both Democratic and Republican administrations. I am confident that his expertise in national security, counterterrorism, and intelligence will greatly benefit our Department and our country as we continue to combat evolving threats,” Mayorkas said. “I look forward to working with Ken as he leads I&A in its critical mission to share timely and actionable information and intelligence with our partners across every level of government, in the private sector, local communities, and the public to help keep Americans safe.”

Mayorkas thanked Melissa Smislova for her acting role as Under Secretary for I&A; she will continue to serve at I&A as Acting Principal Deputy Under Secretary.

Wainstein was a litigation partner in the Washington, D.C. office of Davis Polk & Wardwell. During his time in private practice, Wainstein also served as a law school adjunct professor teaching national security law for twelve years, as a commissioner on the Bipartisan Commission on Biodefense, as a member of the Public Interest Declassification Board, and in a number of other national security organizations.

Wainstein previously spent over 20 years in a number of law enforcement and national security positions in the federal government. Between 1989 and 2001, Wainstein served as a federal prosecutor in both the Southern District of New York and the District of Columbia, where he handled criminal prosecutions ranging from public corruption to violent gang cases and held a variety of supervisory positions, including Acting United States Attorney. In 2001, he was appointed Director of the Executive Office for U.S. Attorneys where he provided oversight and support to the 94 U.S. Attorneys’ Offices. Between 2002 and 2004, Wainstein served as General Counsel of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and then as Chief of Staff to Director Robert S. Mueller, III.

Wainstein was then nominated and confirmed as United States Attorney for the District of Columbia, where he led the largest U.S. Attorney’s Office in the country, and in 2006 he was again confirmed as the first Assistant Attorney General for National Security at the Department of Justice. In that position, Wainstein established and led the new National Security Division, which consolidated the Justice Department’s law enforcement and intelligence operations on all national security matters.

In 2008, Wainstein was named Homeland Security Advisor by President George W. Bush. In that capacity, he advised the President, convened and chaired meetings of the Cabinet Officers on the Homeland Security Council, and oversaw the inter-agency process coordinating the nation’s counterterrorism, homeland security, infrastructure protection, and disaster response and recovery efforts.

Wainstein graduated from the University of Virginia and received his law degree from the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law. He lives in Northern Virginia with his wife and their four daughters.

Homeland Security Todayhttp://www.hstoday.us
The Government Technology & Services Coalition's Homeland Security Today (HSToday) is the premier news and information resource for the homeland security community, dedicated to elevating the discussions and insights that can support a safe and secure nation. A non-profit magazine and media platform, HSToday provides readers with the whole story, placing facts and comments in context to inform debate and drive realistic solutions to some of the nation’s most vexing security challenges.

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