Kenneth L. Wainstein

Kenneth Leonard Wainstein (born 1962) is an American lawyer.[1] He served as the first Assistant Attorney General for National Security, and later as the Homeland Security Advisor to United States President George W. Bush.

Ken Wainstein
Ken Wainstein.jpg
4th United States Homeland Security Advisor
In office
March 30, 2008 – January 20, 2009
PresidentGeorge W. Bush
Preceded byFrances Townsend
Succeeded byJohn O. Brennan
United States Assistant Attorney General for the National Security Division
In office
September 28, 2006 – March 30, 2008
PresidentGeorge W. Bush
Preceded byPosition established
Succeeded byJ. Patrick Rowan
United States Attorney for the District of Columbia
In office
May 2004 – September 28, 2006
PresidentGeorge W. Bush
Preceded byRoscoe C. Howard Jr.
Succeeded byRonald Machen
Personal details
Kenneth Leonard Wainstein

1962 (age 58–59)
EducationUniversity of Virginia (BA)
University of California, Berkeley (JD)


Wainstein is a graduate of the University of Virginia and earned his J.D. degree from the University of California, Berkeley School of Law.[1]


Wainstein worked for the Federal Bureau of Investigation, as General Counsel and as Chief of Staff to the FBI Director.[1] He was United States Attorney for the District of Columbia.[1]

On September 26, 2006, he was sworn in as the Department of Justice's Assistant Attorney General responsible for National Security.[2]

Wainstein was appointed Homeland Security Advisor by President George W. Bush on March 30, 2008. He was also Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism and chaired the Homeland Security Council. He was appointed as the "National Continuity Coordinator" under the auspices of National Security Presidential Directive 51.[3]

Wainstein also serves as a member of the Blue Ribbon Study Panel on Biodefense, a group that encourages and advocates changes to government policy to strengthen national biodefense.[4]

In October 2020, Wainstein signed a letter, along with 19 other Republican-appointed former U.S. Attorneys, calling President Donald Trump "a threat to the rule of law in our country" and endorsing Joe Biden.[5]


  1. ^ a b c d "Kenneth L. Wainstein Sworn in as First Assistant Attorney General for the National Security Division: Other Senior National Security Division Officials Announced". United States Department of Justice. 2006-09-26. Retrieved 2009-03-17.
  2. ^ "Official Bio". Retrieved October 25, 2011.
  3. ^ "National Security Presidential Directive". Retrieved October 25, 2011.
  4. ^ "Blue Ribbon Study Panel on Biodefense". Retrieved 2017-03-31.
  5. ^ Hamburger, Tom; Barrett, Devlin (October 27, 2020). "Former U.S. attorneys — all Republicans — back Biden, saying Trump threatens 'the rule of law'". Washington Post. Retrieved 27 October 2020.

External linksEdit

  Media related to Kenneth L. Wainstein at Wikimedia Commons

Legal offices
Preceded by
Roscoe C. Howard Jr.
United States Attorney for the District of Columbia
Succeeded by
Ronald Machen
New office United States Assistant Attorney General for the National Security Division
Succeeded by
J. Patrick Rowan
Political offices
Preceded by
Frances Townsend
United States Homeland Security Advisor
Succeeded by
John O. Brennan