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Photo © 2012 Lynn Goldsmith. Courtesy Wilson Center

Chair, Freedom House; nine-term Congresswoman

American Academy Lecturer - Class of Spring 2023

Jane Harman resigned from Congress February 28, 2011 to join the Woodrow Wilson Center as its first female Director, President, and CEO.


Representing the aerospace center of California during nine terms in Congress, she served on all the major security committees: six years on Armed Services, eight years on Intelligence, and eight on Homeland Security.  During her long public career, Harman has been recognized as a national expert at the nexus of security and public policy issues, and has received numerous awards for distinguished service.


She serves on the Executive Committee of the Trilateral Commission and the Advisory Board of the Munich Security Conference. She also co-chairs the Homeland Security Experts Group with former Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff.


Harman is a Trustee of the Aspen Institute and an Honorary Trustee at the University of Southern California.  She serves on the board of Iridium Communication Inc, a NASDAQ traded satellite communications company, and is a member of the Presidential Debates Commission and the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget.


A product of Los Angeles public schools, Harman is a magna cum laude graduate of Smith College, where she was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, and Harvard Law School.  Prior to serving in Congress, she was Staff Director of the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Constitutional Rights, Deputy Cabinet Secretary to President Jimmy Carter, Special Counsel to the Department of Defense, and in private law practice.


(Biography courtesy the Wilson Center)

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