Michael Chertoff
Michael Chertoff
Former Board Member

Michael Chertoff is the Executive Chairman and Co-founder of the Chertoff Group. He previously served as the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security from 2005 to 2009.

As Secretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Chertoff led the work in blocking would-be terrorists from crossing into the US. He was instrumental in transforming the Federal Emergency Management Agency in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

At Chertoff Group, he provides high-level strategic counsel to corporate and government leaders on a broad range of security issues, from risk identification and prevention to preparedness, response and recovery. “Risk management has become the CEO’s concern,” he says. “We help our clients develop comprehensive strategies to manage risk without building barriers that get in the way of carrying on their business.” In addition to his role at Chertoff Group, he is also senior of counsel at Covington & Burling LLP, and a member of the firm’s White Collar Defense and Investigations practice group.

Before heading up the Department of Homeland Security, Chertoff served as a federal judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. Earlier, during more than a decade as a federal prosecutor, he investigated and prosecuted cases of political corruption, organized crime, corporate fraud and terrorism – including the investigation of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

Chertoff is a magna cum laude graduate of Harvard College (1975) and Harvard Law School (1978). From 1979-1980 he served as a clerk to Supreme Court Justice William Brennan, Jr.