Kenneth L. Wainstein
Partner, Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP, Adjunct Professor of Law
B.A., University of Virginia; J.D., University of California, Berkeley
B.A., Phi Beta Kappa, University of Virginia; J.D., University of California at Berkeley. Professor Wainstein is a partner at Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP. His...Continue Reading
B.A., Phi Beta Kappa, University of Virginia; J.D., University of California at Berkeley.
Professor Wainstein is a partner at Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP. His practice focuses on corporate internal investigations and civil and criminal enforcement proceedings.
Professor Wainstein spent 19 years in the Department of Justice. From 1989 to 2001, he served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in both the Southern District of New York and the District of Columbia, where he handled numerous prosecutions, tried 25 jury trials, and presented 15 appellate arguments.
In 2001, Professor Wainstein was appointed Director of the Executive office for U.S. Attorneys, where he provided oversight and support to the 94 U.S. Attorneys’ offices. The next year, Professor Wainstein joined the Federal Bureau of Investigation to serve as General Counsel, and later, as Chief of Staff to Director Robert S. Mueller. At the FBI, Professor Wainstein was involved in a myriad of sensitive national security and criminal enforcement matters, as well as a variety of civil litigation, managerial, and Congressional oversight issues. Two years later he was appointed, and later confirmed as, U.S. Attorney in DC, where he tackled the investigation and prosecution of high-profile white-collar and public corruption cases, including the case against Riggs Bank for Bank Secrecy Act violations and the prosecution of MZM Chief Executive Mitchell Wade for paying bribes to former Congressman Randall “Duke” Cunningham.
Professor Wainstein was confirmed by the Senate again in 2006, after being nominated as the first Assistant Attorney General for National Security at the Justice Department. He stood up and led the new National Security Division, which consolidated DOJ’s law enforcement and intelligence activities on counterterrorism and counterintelligence matters, and he oversaw the Department’s role in regulatory mechanisms such as the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S. (CFIUS). He also led several national security initiatives, including the launch of a national, inter-agency Export Control Enforcement Initiative targeting illegal exports of sensitive technology and weapons components. That same year, Professor Wainstein was named President Bush’s Homeland Security Advisor, with a portfolio covering the coordination of the nation’s counterterrorism, homeland security, infrastructure protection, and disaster response and recovery efforts.