Jose W. Fernandez

Partner/Co-Chair, Latin America Practice Group @ Gibson, Dunn, & Crutcher

Nominated by President Obama and unanimously confirmed by the Senate, Mr. Jose Fernandez was sworn in as Assistant Secretary for the State Department’s Economic, Energy and Business Affairs Bureau on December 1, 2009. During his nearly four-year tenure, he led the Bureau that is responsible for overseeing work on international trade and investment policy; international finance, development and debt policy; economic sanctions and combating terrorist financing; international energy security policy; international telecommunications and transportation policies; and support for U.S. businesses and the private sector overseas. He spearheaded the State Department’s "Economic Statecraft" initiative, co-led the interagency team that prepared the Model Bilateral Investment Treaty used by the United States today, worked with American businesses to promote responsible business conduct in Myanmar, Bangladesh and the diamond industry through the Kimberly Process, and led the U.S. government’s economic dialogues with Turkey, the UAE, Brazil and several other nations. Prior to joining the State Department, Mr. Fernandez was a partner in the New York office of Latham & Watkins from 2006 to 2009, serving as global chair of the Latin America practice. Throughout his legal career, his practice focused on Latin America, Europe and Africa, advising clients on international mergers and acquisitions, financings, trade and other matters as the economies of these regions evolved. Mr. Fernandez graduated in 1980 from Columbia Law School where he received the Charles Evans Hughes Prize and a Parker School Certificate of International Law with Honors.