Kenneth Juster

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Kenneth I. Juster
Ken Juster official photo.jpg
25th United States Ambassador to India
In office
November 23, 2017 – January 20, 2021
PresidentDonald J. Trump
Preceded byRichard Verma
Succeeded byvacant
Under Secretary of Commerce for Industry and Security
In office
PresidentGeorge W. Bush
Preceded byWilliam Alan Reinsch[1]
Succeeded byDavid McCormick[2]
Counselor of the United States Department of State
In office
PresidentGeorge H. W. Bush
Preceded byRobert B. Zoellick
Succeeded byTim Wirth
Personal details
Born (1954-11-24) November 24, 1954 (age 67)
New York City, New York, U.S.
RelativesNorton Juster (uncle)
EducationHarvard University (AB, MPP, JD)

Kenneth Ian Juster (born November 24, 1954) is an American government official who served as the United States ambassador to India from 2017 to 2021.[3] He previously served as the deputy assistant to President Donald Trump for international economic affairs and deputy director of the National Economic Council from January 2017 to June 2017.[4][5]

Juster's career has spanned almost 40 years in government, law, business, finance, and international affairs. In the private sector, he has been a partner at the global investment firm Warburg Pincus, a senior executive at the software company, and a senior partner at the law firm Arnold & Porter. In the U.S. Government, he has previously served as under secretary of commerce, as the counselor of the State Department, and as the deputy and senior advisor to Deputy Secretary of State Lawrence S. Eagleburger. Juster has also served as the chairman of the advisory committee of the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs, the chairman of Freedom House, the vice chairman of the Asia Foundation, and a member of the Trilateral Commission. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the American Academy of Diplomacy.

Early life and education[edit]

Juster was born in New York City. His father, Howard H. Juster, was an architect. His mother, Muriel (Uchitelle) Juster was a high school social studies teacher. He has an older brother, Andrew A. Juster, who was the CFO at the Simon Property Group His uncle, Norton Juster, was an architect and author who wrote The Phantom Tollbooth and The Dot and the Line, among other books.

Juster grew up in Scarsdale, New York. He attended Greenacres Elementary School, where he was named a Distinguished Alumnus in 2010. While at Scarsdale Junior High School, Juster and two friends interviewed Mick Jagger and Keith Richards in 1966 for the school newspaper. Juster graduated from Scarsdale High School in 1972, where he was the president of the Honor Society, an AFS exchange student in Thailand (1971), and a member of the varsity basketball team. Juster was named a Distinguished Alumnus of Scarsdale High School in 2007.

Juster graduated from Harvard College, Phi Beta Kappa, in 1976, with a Bachelor of Arts in government. While at Harvard, he was the research assistant to Professor Samuel P. Huntington, the general manager of Harvard Political Review, and an undergraduate associate of Harvard's Center for International Affairs (CFIA). Juster received a grant from the CFIA in 1975 to conduct research in Japan for his senior thesis, "How Process Affects Substance: Japanese Foreign Policy Making During the Oil Crisis of 1972–1973," under Professors Edwin O. Reischauer and Robert Paarlberg. Juster completed a four-year joint degree program at Harvard Law School, graduating with a Juris Doctor and Master of Public Policy in 1980.


Early career[edit]

Juster was a visiting fellow at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government in 2010 and 2011, and at the Council on Foreign Relations in 1993; as a law clerk in 1980 to 1981 to Judge James L. Oakes of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit; and at the National Security Council in 1978.

From 1981 to 1989 and 1993 to 2001, Juster practiced law at Arnold & Porter,[6] where he became a senior partner. His work involved international arbitration and litigation, corporate counseling, regulatory matters, and international trade and transactions. Among his noteworthy cases was his representation of the government of Panama-in-exile against the Noriega regime in 1988 and 1989. In that matter, he coordinated a legal strategy that secured the overseas assets of the Government of Panama and helped institute U.S. sanctions against the Noriega regime. Juster also represented leading U.S. investment funds in Ukraine, Moldova, and Slovakia, and several non-profit organizations, including the National Endowment for Democracy, the Kennan Institute (George Kennan), and the Gorbachev Foundation. In addition, he successfully argued cases in the U.S. Court of Appeals and in U.S. District Courts.

George H. W. Bush administration[edit]

Juster served as the counselor of the United States Department of State from 1992 to 1993, and as the deputy and senior adviser to Deputy Secretary of State Lawrence Eagleburger from 1989 to 1992. He was one of the key U.S. Government officials involved in establishing and managing U.S. assistance programs to Central and Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union, including setting up the initial Enterprise Funds for that region. On behalf of Secretary of State James Baker, Juster organized the first [[ (NIS) of the former Soviet Union in January 1992, shortly after the collapse of the U.S.S.R, and led the first international delegation to meet with representatives of the NIS in Minsk, Belarus in February 1992. He was also a member of the five-man team that traveled to Israel directly prior to and during the first Gulf War to negotiate with the Israelis regarding their posture during that War. In addition, Juster was actively involved at State in policy matters relating to China, Japan, Latin America, and the Persian Gulf. Upon completion of his tenure at the State Department, Juster received the Secretary of State's Distinguished Service Award and Medal, the State Department's highest honor.

George. W. Bush administration[edit]

Juster served as United States Under Secretary of Commerce from 2001 to 2005, in charge of the Bureau of Industry and Security. In that capacity, Juster oversaw issues at the intersection of business and national security, including strategic trade controls related to the exports of sensitive U.S. goods and technologies, imports and foreign investments that affect U.S. security, enforcement of anti-boycott laws, and industry compliance with international arms control agreements. He also co-founded and served as the U.S. chair of the U.S.–India High Technology Cooperation Group, and was one of the key architects of the Next Steps in Strategic Partnership initiative between the United States and India.

Law and business[edit]

Juster was a partner at Warburg Pincus from 2010 to 2017.[7] He focused on a broad range of issues, including geopolitical risk, global public policy, and regulatory matters relating to the firm's investment activities and portfolio companies. He also founded and led the firm's environmental, social, and governance program and initiatives. From 2005 to 2010, he was executive vice president of law, policy, and corporate strategy at Salesforce.[8] At Salesforce, he was a member of the company's executive committee and oversaw corporate development, legal affairs, global public policy and strategy, enterprise risk management, human resources, internal audit, and worldwide real estate.

Trump administration[edit]

Juster at the 2009 India Economic Summit

Juster was nominated by President Trump on September 5, 2017 to be the United States Ambassador to the Republic of India. He was confirmed by unanimous consent of the U.S. Senate on November 2, 2017, and appointed and sworn in on November 3, 2017. Juster presented his credentials to the President of India on November 23, 2017, thereby becoming the 25th U.S. ambassador to India. During his tenure, Juster has overseen, among other activities, the U.S. co-sponsorship with India of the Global Entrepreneurship Summit (November 2017), the continued expansion of trade and investment between the United States and India, the launch of the Strategic Energy Partnership (April 2018), the U.S.-India Civil Aviation Summit (May 2018), and the Two-Plus-Two Ministerial Dialogue between each country's Foreign and Defense Ministers (September 2018), which included the signing of the landmark Communications Compatibility and Security Agreement (COMCASA). Juster gave a widely acclaimed policy address in January 2018, which set out a vision for a durable U.S.-India strategic partnership.

Juster was the deputy assistant to the president for international economic affairs and deputy director of the National Economic Council from January 2017 to June 2017.[9][10][11] In that role, he helped coordinate the administration's international economic policy and integrate it with national security and foreign policy. Juster was also a senior member of the National Security Council staff.[12] He helped establish the U.S.-Japan Economic Dialogue and the U.S.-U.K. Economic Dialogue. He contributed to the U.S. economic relationships with Canada, China, Germany, India, Saudi Arabia, and South Korea. Juster served as the president's representative and lead U.S. negotiator ("Sherpa") in the run-up to the 43rd G7 summit in Taormina, Italy.


Juster has received numerous honors and awards, including:[13][14]

  • Member, U.S. President's Advisory Committee for Trade Policy and Negotiations, 2007-2010
  • Officer's Cross of the Order of Merit from the President of the Federal Republic of Germany (for contributions to U.S.-German relations), 2006
  • Secretary of Commerce's William C. Redfield Award and Medal, 2005
  • Vasco Núñez de Balboa en el Grado de Gran Cruz Decoration and Medal from the President of Panama (for contributions to U.S.-Panama relations), 2004
  • Blackwill Award from the U.S.-India Business Council (for contributions to U.S.-India relations), 2004
  • Friendship Award from the U.S.-Panama Business Council (for contributions to U.S.-Panama relations), 2004, 2002
  • Secretary of State's Distinguished Service Award and Medal, 1993
  • Distinguished Alumnus of Scarsdale High School, 2007


Juster has published extensively on international economic and legal issues, including Making Economic Policy: An Assessment of the National Economic Council (Brookings Institution, 1997) and “The Myth of Iraqgate” in Foreign Policy magazine (Spring 1994). Juster's research, analysis, and public discourse on the so-called Iraqgate scandal was instrumental in demonstrating that, contrary to media reporting and popular opinion, there was, in fact, no improper or illicit assistance by the U.S. Government to Iraq in the lead up to the 1991 Gulf War. An Independent Counsel appointed by the U.S. Attorney General in the Clinton Administration subsequently investigated the Iraqgate claims and validated all elements of Juster's analysis.


  1. ^ "PN192 - Nomination of Kenneth I. Juster for Department of Commerce, 107th Congress (2001-2002)". May 10, 2001. Retrieved June 29, 2018.
  2. ^ "PN662 - Nomination of David H. McCormick for Department of Commerce, 109th Congress (2005-2006)". October 7, 2005. Retrieved June 29, 2018.
  3. ^ "Senate Confirms Kenneth Juster As U.S. Ambassador To India". NDTV. November 3, 2017. Retrieved November 3, 2017.
  4. ^ "Kenneth Juster to be Ambassador to India". The Hindu. Retrieved August 29, 2017.
  5. ^ "PN909 — Kenneth Ian Juster — Department of State". U.S. Congress. Retrieved September 6, 2017.
  6. ^ Straehley, Steve (September 22, 2017). "U.S. Ambassador to India: Who Is Kenneth Juster?". AllGov. Retrieved December 7, 2017.
  7. ^ Rogin, Josh (June 21, 2017). "Top White House aide likely the next ambassador to India". Washington Post. Retrieved December 7, 2017.
  8. ^ Desai, Ronak (September 14, 2017). "Washington Reacts As Trump Nominates New U.S. Ambassador To India". Forbes. Retrieved December 7, 2017.
  9. ^ "White House National Security Advisor Announces NSC Senior Staff Appointments". (Press release). The White House. February 2, 2017. Retrieved March 28, 2017 – via National Archives.
  10. ^ "White House National Security Advisor and Director of the National Economic Council Announce Senior Staff Appointment". June 8, 2017. Retrieved August 29, 2017 – via National Archives.
  11. ^ "White House: Meet Trump's G-20 'Sherpa'". Retrieved August 29, 2017.
  12. ^ Sirohi, Seema (September 10, 2017). "Meet Kenneth Juster, the 'inspired' choice for Ambassador to India". The Economic Times. Retrieved December 7, 2017.
  13. ^ "Kenneth I. Juster". The Asia Foundation. Retrieved December 7, 2017.
  14. ^ Spero, Domani (September 5, 2017). "Top White House Aide Kenneth I. Juster to be U.S. Ambassador to India". Diplopundit. Retrieved December 7, 2017.

External links[edit]

Diplomatic posts
Preceded by United States Ambassador to India
Succeeded by
Donald L. Heflin
Chargé d'Affaires