FacultyFaculty/Author Profile

Eric L. Hirschhorn

Bureau of Industry and Security, U.S. Department of Commerce
Under Secretary for Industry and Security
Washington, DC, USA

President Barack Obama appointed Eric L. Hirschhorn to be an Under Secretary of Commerce, heading the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS), on March 29, 2010. Mr. Hirschhorn was sworn in April 2, 2010.

Mr. Hirschhorn most recently was a partner in the Washington, D.C. office of Winston & Strawn LLP.

Mr. Hirschhorn oversees the Commerce agency that advances U.S. national security, foreign policy and economic objectives by ensuring an effective export control and treaty compliance system and by promoting U.S. strategic technology leadership.

From 1980 to 1981, Mr. Hirschhorn was the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Export Administration at the Department of Commerce and oversaw U.S. export controls for items having commercial and military applications, antiboycott compliance, restraints on imports for national security reasons, and the department's participation in the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS).

Earlier, while a member of President Jimmy Carter's reorganization project staff (1977-1980), he worked on reorganizing the government's international trade, public diplomacy, and foreign assistance mechanisms. Before working in the executive branch, Mr. Hirschhorn held several congressional staff positions, was in private law practice in New York City, and was a legal services lawyer.

After returning to private law practice in 1981, Mr. Hirschhorn represented foreign and domestic clients on a wide range of commercial and regulatory matters. His practice included advising and assisting clients regarding export and embargo regulations, as well as about financing and other aspects of international transactions.

Mr. Hirschhorn is the former Executive Secretary of the Industry Coalition on Technology Transfer (ICOTT), a group whose trade association and industry participants are affected by U.S. export control and embargo rules. He is the author of The Export Control and Embargo Handbook, whose third edition was published in 2010 by Oxford University Press, and numerous articles on export controls, embargoes, and related topics. Outside the international trade area, Mr. Hirschhorn's practice included trial and appellate litigation, along with lawyers' professional responsibility matters.

He also is a member of the New York City Bar Association and the Thurgood Marshall American Inn of Court. Mr. Hirschhorn received his B.A. degree from the University of Chicago, where he majored in Political Science, and a J.D. degree from Columbia University, where he was a Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar. He has chaired two committees of the District of Columbia Bar-the Legal Ethics Committee and the Rules of Professional Responsibility Review Committee.


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