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Senior Fellow, Brookings Institution

Kurt Viermetz Distinguished Visitor - Class of Spring 2021

Todd Stern is a nonresident senior fellow at the Brookings Institution concentrating on climate change. Stern served from January 2009 until April 2016, as the special envoy for climate change at the Department of State. He was President Obama’s chief climate negotiator, leading the U.S. effort in negotiating the Paris Agreement and in all bilateral and multilateral climate negotiations in the seven years leading up to Paris. Stern also participated in the development of U.S. domestic climate and clean energy policy.


Stern served under President Clinton in the White House from 1993 to 1999, mostly as an assistant to the President and Staff Secretary. From 1997 to 1999, he coordinated the administration’s initiative on global climate change, acting as the Senior White House negotiator at the Kyoto and Buenos Aires negotiations. From 1999 to 2001, Stern served as counselor to Secretary of the Treasury Lawrence Summers, advising the secretary on the policy and politics of a broad range of economic and financial issues, and supervising Treasury’s anti-money laundering strategy.


In the fall of 2016, Stern was a Visiting Lecturer in Law at Yale Law School and has lectured periodically since then at both Yale and Brown Universities.


He has written for various publications, including Foreign Affairs, The Washington Post, The Atlantic, Yale Environment 360, The American Interest, and The Washington Quarterly.  He has also appeared on CNN, the BBC, MSNBC, and NPR, among other outlets.


Stern graduated from Dartmouth College and Harvard Law School. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

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