|Born||Robert Hunter Biden
February 4, 1970
Wilmington, Delaware, U.S.
|Alma mater||Georgetown University (B.A.)
Yale Law School (J.D.)
|Children||Naomi Biden (daughter)
Finnegan Biden (daughter)
Maisy Biden (daughter)
|Relatives||Joe Biden (father)
Neilia Biden (mother; deceased)
Jill Biden (step-mother)
Beau Biden (brother)
Naomi Biden (sister; deceased)
Ashley Biden (half-sister)
Robert Hunter Biden (born February 4, 1970) is the second son of U.S. Vice President Joe Biden and stepson of Second Lady of the United States Jill Biden. He is a partner at Rosemont Seneca Partners, LLC and is Counsel to Boies, Schiller, Flexner, LLP, a New York based-law firm. His appointment to the board of the Ukrainian Energy Company Burisma Holdings, which is part of the vast business empire of Ihor Kolomoisky, has attracted controversy.
Early life and family
Biden was born in Wilmington, Delaware, the youngest son of former U.S. Senator and current Vice President Joe Biden, and his first wife, Neilia Hunter. His mother and younger sister, Naomi Christina Biden, were killed in an automobile accident in 1972, in which he and his brother, Beau, were seriously injured. He and his brother encouraged his father to marry again, and Jill Jacobs became Beau's stepmother in 1977. His half-sister Ashley was born in 1981.
Biden received a bachelor's degree from Georgetown University; and a Juris Doctor from Yale Law School. After graduating from college Hunter Biden was a member of the Jesuit Volunteer Corps Northwest, where he met his wife.
From 2001-2008, Biden was a founding partner of Oldaker, Biden, and Belair, LLP, a Washington DC-based law firm. He also served as a partner and board member of the mergers and acquisitions firm Eudora Global. Biden was chief executive officer, and later chairman, of the fund of hedge funds PARADIGM Global Advisors, founded in 1991 by Dr. James Park. At MBNA, a major US bank, Biden was employed as a senior vice president. Following that, Biden was appointed by Bill Clinton to serve in the United States Department of Commerce under Secretaries Norman Mineta and William M. Daley. He was director of ecommerce policy issues in the Department of Commerce.
Biden also serves as a member of numerous boards. He is currently Chairman of the Board of the World Food Program USA. In addition to holding directorships on the Boards of the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition, The Truman National Security Project and the Center for National Policy, he sits on the Chairman’s Advisory Board for the National Democratic Institute (NDI). NDI is a project of the National Endowment for Democracy (NED). Biden is a member of the President’s Advisory board of the Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Washington; and a member of the board of the Israel Idonije Foundation.
Biden is a former board member of several entities. On May 16, 2006, Biden was nominated by President George W. Bush to the board of directors of Amtrak. He was confirmed unanimously on July 26, 2006 by the United States Senate for a term of five years, and was the vice-chair of the board until January 29, 2009. Biden served as Honorary Co-Chair of the 2008 Obama-Biden Inaugural Committee and is a former board member of the CSIS Executive Council on Development and the National Prostate Cancer Coalition.
On April 18, 2014, Burisma Holdings announced Biden's appointment to the board of directors in a press release. Burisma is the largest non-governmental gas producer in the Ukraine, it was incorporated in 2006 and is based in Limassol, Cyprus - a European tax haven. Burisma holds licenses covering the Dnieper-Donets Basin, the Carpathian and Azov-Kuban basins and has considerable reserves and production capability. Burisma was founded by Mykola Zlochevsky, the former minister of energy minister and deputy national security council chair under Viktor Yanukovych, in 2006. Zlochevsky later sold his shares to the Privat Group, which is part of the vast business empire of Ukraine’s second richest billionaire oligarch, Ihor Kolomoisky. Joining Hunter Biden on the Burisma Board of Directors is Aleksander Kwaśniewski, named in January. Kwaśniewski was President of the Republic of Poland from 1995 to 2005 during the G. W. Bush presidency. Chairman of Burisma is the Wall Street former Merrill Lynch investment banker Alan Apter. Finally, Burisma also at the same time named to the board Devon Archer, Hunter Biden’s partner at the US investment firm, Rosemont Seneca Partners, and a manager of the family wealth fund of Secretary of State John Kerry’s wife Theresa Heinz Kerry, widow of H. John Heinz III. Archer also sits on the board of the family’s Howard J. Heinz trust. So with these two board appointments in April, Burisma gained the son of the Vice President of the United States and the financial adviser to the family of the Secretary of State.
Hunter Biden's father Joe Biden traveled to Kiev on April 22, 2014 and urged it "... to reduce its dependence on Russia for supplies of natural gas." And he discussed how the United States could help provide technical expertise for expanding domestic production of natural gas. The United States maneuvering the Ukraine situation so that Western Oil Companies have free access to shale gas (from "fracking") and drill all across the Ukraine, with the revelations that Hunter Biden serves on the board of the Ukrainian company Burisma raised serious conflict of interest questions for US’ Ukraine policy the world over. The White House has dismissed nepotism charges against Biden's son. But the director of the US-Ukraine Business Council Morgan Williams pointed to an "American tradition that frowns on close family members of government working for organizations with business links to active politics". Williams stated Biden appears to have violated this unwritten principle: "... when you're trying to keep the political sector separate from the business sector, and reduce corruption, then it's not just about holding down corruption, it's also the appearance." Kolomoisky was appointed "Governor of Dnipropetrovsk Oblast", precisely the region where Ukraine’s shale gas deposits lie and he has raised his own private army to wage war against the east Ukraine rebels. July 2014 the private army soldiers brought in oil and gas fracking equipment and drilling rigs into the region where Kolomoisky’s army has secured the area and Ukrainian troope were helping to install shale gas production equipment near the east Ukrainian town of Slavyansk, which they bombed and shelled for the three preceding months. Slavyansk is in the heart of the Yzovka shale gas field, where residents had staged numerous protests against its shale fracking development.
Biden maintains a personal philosophy that is rooted in service to others.
In speaking about his father, Joe Biden, and the importance of helping others, the younger Biden stated in a November 23, 2007 article by Linda Waddington the appeared in The Iowa Independent:
- I think my dad has always had an idealism about what he does and he has passed that on to us. I think he feels more than anything if you can wade through the bad parts of politics, that what you really have an opportunity to do is help people. One thing I did learn is that you don’t have to be a United States Senator to help people. You don’t have to be an elected official to serve.
- All in the family: Hunter Biden, The Iowa Independent, Washington, DC: The American Independent News Network, 23 November 2007, Waddington, L., Retrieved 6 May 2014.
- Hunter Biden quits lobbyist work, ABC.com, New York, NY: ABC News Internet Ventures, 13 September 2008, Hoppock, J., Retrieved 7 May 2014.
- Friends of the World Food Program Board of Directors, World Food Program USA, Washington, DC: World Food Program USA, Undated.
- Kevin Connolly (August 28, 2008). "Biden shows more bark than bite". BBC News. Retrieved 7 May 2014.
- John M. Broder (August 28, 2008). "Biden Opens New Phase With Attack on McCain". The New York Times. Retrieved 7 May 2014.
- Seelye, Katharine Q. (2008-08-24). "Jill Biden Heads Toward Life in the Spotlight". The New York Times. Archived from the original on August 28, 2008. Retrieved 2008-08-25.
- Strasburg, Jenny; Weidlich, Thorn (January 31, 2007). "Lobbyist Hunter Biden is sued on Paradigm purchase (Update1)". Bloomberg. Retrieved 7 May 2014.
- Executive profile: Robert Hunter Biden Bloomberg BusinessWeek, New York, NY: Bloomberg L.P., Undated.
- WFP USA: The Philippines and honoring Bob Dole (video), YouTube, World Food Program USA, 16 December 2013.
- The feed: December edition: Final helping: Philippines, World Food Program USA, Washington, DC: World Food Program USA, 18 December 2013.
- "Amtrak Board Names Thomas Carper of Illinois as Chairman; Former Chairman Donna McLean becomes Vice Chairman" (Press release). Amtrak. January 30, 2009. Retrieved February 23, 2009.
- Biden’s Son, Polish Ex-President Quietly Sign On To Ukrainian Gas Company, Buzzfeed, 14 May 2014
- "Hunter Biden [son of US VP Joe Biden] joins the team of Burisma Holdings [Ukraine gas producer]" (Press release). Burisma Holdings. May 12, 2014. Retrieved May 13, 2014.
- Vice President Joe Biden's son joins Ukraine gas company, BBC News (14 May 2014)
- Another Biden Has Waded Into the Ukraine Crisis - The vice president's son has taken a new role in the country's energy industry, National Journal, 13 May 2014
- Burisma Holdings limited, Businessweek. Retrieved May 19, 2014.
- Kings of Ukrainian Gas, Anti-Corruption Action Centre, August 26, 2012
- Stench of Corruption a Ukraine Oligarch Shale Gas Civil War & Baby Biden, BFP, August 5, 2014
- (Ukrainian) Former President of Poland also has a position in the oil and gas holding deputy Kliuiev, Ukrayinska Pravda (14 May 2014)
- Biden's Son, Kerry Family Friend Join Ukrainian Gas Producer's Board - Ukraine's Burisma Holdings Is Controlled by Former Energy Official Under Yanukovych, The Wall Street Journal, 14 May 2014
- Biden Offers Strong Support to Ukraine and Issues a Sharp Rebuke to Russia, The New York Times, 22. April 2014
- Biden arrives in Ukraine to show U.S. support as crisis with Russia continues, The Washington Post, May 14, 2014
- Hunter Biden’s new job at a Ukrainian gas company is a problem for U.S. soft power, The Washington Post, 14 May 2014
- White House nixes Biden son 'nepotism charge', China Daily, 14 May 2014
- "Muted response to Biden son's Ukraine job". Deutsche Welle (dw.de). August 2, 1997. Retrieved May 19, 2014.
- Billionaire Kolomoisky takes over in Dnipropetrovsk Oblast, blasting Putin and Yanukovych, kyivpost.com, March 3, 2014
- Ukraine Turns to Its Oligarchs for Political Help, nytimes.com, 2 March 2014
- Ukrainian army helps installing shale gas production equipment near Slavyansk, July 25, 2014