John Lawson Thornton (born January 2, 1954) is a Professor and Director of Global Leadership at Tsinghua University in Beijing. He is a former President and Co-CEO of Goldman Sachs.
Early life and education
Thornton earned a bachelor's degree from Harvard University. He received a bachelor's and master's degrees in Jurisprudence and later in 1980, an M.A. in Public and Private Management from Yale.
In 1983, Thornton founded and developed Goldman Sachs' European mergers and acquisitions business. He served as co-CEO of Goldman Sachs International in London from 1995 to 1996. Thornton was Chairman of Goldman Sachs Asia from 1996 to 1998, where he expanded the firm's regional franchise during the Asian financial crisis.
Thornton serves on the boards of Barrick Gold, Intel, Pacific Century Group, Ford Motor Company, China Netcom. He is also Chairman of the Board of The Brookings Institution.
In 2006, Thornton funded the establishment of the John L. Thornton China Center at the Brookings Institution.
In 2009, he also became a member of the International Advisory Council of the Chinese sovereign wealth fund China Investment Corporation.