Statement from Ambassador Katherine Tai on Nomination of Nelson Cunningham

January 11, 2024

WASHINGTON – United States Trade Representative Katherine Tai today released the following statement after President Biden announced his intent to nominate Nelson Cunningham as Deputy United States Trade Representative.

“Nelson Cunningham knows that trade policy operates at the intersection of domestic economic and foreign policy and he will be an excellent addition to our team at USTR. His work in the White House, on Capitol Hill, and in the private sector will provide a valuable perspective as we navigate the evolving landscape of the 21st century global economy. I look forward to working with him as USTR continues to advance an inclusive, worker-centered trade agenda that benefits all Americans.”

Nelson Cunningham, Nominee for Deputy United States Trade Representative 

Nelson W. Cunningham co-founded McLarty Associates in 1998 and helped lead the firm for 25 years until stepping away last year. Under Cunningham’s leadership, McLarty Associates developed into a firm with global reach and over one hundred employees and advisors in 20 countries around the world. Before 1998, Cunningham served in the Clinton White House as Special Advisor to the President on Western Hemisphere affairs and as General Counsel at the White House Office of Administration. He previously served as General Counsel of the Senate Judiciary Committee, under then-Chairman Joseph R. Biden.

Before moving to Washington, Cunningham served as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Southern District of New York from 1988 until 1994, and in 1984 he was a staffer on the successful Senate campaign of John Kerry.

Cunningham is active on foreign policy and political matters and frequently speaks to audiences in the United States and abroad. He is a frequent commentator on legal and political issues. He serves on numerous NGO boards, and is Vice Chair of the Business Council for International Understanding.

Cunningham is fluent in Spanish, having lived in seven Latin American countries throughout his upbringing. He is the proud son of a schoolteacher and American businessman.