WASHINGTON - United States Trade Representative Rob
Portman today announced changes to the USTR staff.
“We’re putting together a great team here,”
said Portman. “I am pleased that Matt and Jim are continuing their tenure here
in an enhanced role and that we’re bringing Justin on board at this critical
juncture in our global trade negotiations.”
Matt Niemeyer – Counselor
Mr Niemeyer who led the Agency’s successful
efforts for passage of the free trade agreements with Central America and the
Republic, Australia, Chile, Morocco and
Singapore will become one of USTR’s principal
He was appointed Assistant U.S. Trade
Representative for Congressional Affairs in April 2003 and in this position has
been in charge of coordinating USTR’s communications with Congress, scheduling
frequent meetings on all trade-related matters of interest to members, and
providing a conduit for members to express their concerns about ongoing trade
negotiations. Mr Niemeyer previously served as the deputy in the
Before joining USTR, Mr Niemeyer was deputy
political director for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee. He also
served as the manager of grassroots programs for the Independent Insurance
Agents of America and as a legislative assistant and political consultant for
House Rules Committee Chairman Gerald B. Solomon.
Mr Niemeyer has spent much of his career in
politics, working in two election cycles at the National Republican
Congressional Committee and as a staff assistant in the state office of U.S.
Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz. Mr Niemeyer has a bachelor’s degree in political
science from Arizona State University.
James E. Mendenhall – General
James E. Mendenhall was appointed to the
position of Acting General Counsel in February 2005 and now becomes the
permanent General Counsel. He is
responsible for supervising all trade litigation and the legal aspects of the
negotiation and implementation of trade agreements. Mr Mendenhall oversees a staff of over
From 2003-2005, Mr Mendenhall served as the
Assistant USTR for Services, Investment, and Intellectual Property. In that position, he oversaw the
negotiation of the services, investment, and intellectual property chapters of
numerous free trade agreements, including those with
Australia, Bahrain, and Central America and the
Republic, as well as the services negotiations that
are part of the Doha Development Agenda. From 2001-2003, Mr Mendenhall served as
Deputy General Counsel of USTR, where he oversaw various trade policy
initiatives and litigation matters.
Prior to joining USTR, Mr Mendenhall was a
partner in the law firm of Powell, Goldstein, Fraser & Murphy L.L.P.,
specializing in international trade and investment policy and
Mr Mendenhall graduated with Honors from
Harvard Law School and with Highest Honors from the University
of Notre Dame.
Justin McCarthy – Assistant USTR for
Intergovernmental Affairs and Public Liaison
Mr McCarthy will lead the domestic
outreach efforts to state and local governments, the business and agricultural
communities, labor, environmental and consumer groups and advancing USTR
priorities at external events. He will also be responsible for improving the public's understanding of
U.S. trade policies through education and
strategic communications initiatives. In addition, his office manages the
U.S. trade advisory committee
Since 2003, Mr McCarthy has served as
Director of Government Relations for Pfizer. Prior to that, he was Assistant Director
of Government Relations (2001-2003).
During his time at Pfizer, Mr McCarthy was responsible for international
trade, intellectual property and tax issues. In addition to his corporate
responsibilities, Mr McCarthy served as Co-Chair of the Business Coalition for
U.S.-Central America Trade which was charged with ensuring Congressional
approval of DR-CAFTA.
Before joining Pfizer, Mr McCarthy was
Legislative Director for Mayer, Brown & Platt's international trade practice
(1998-2001). Mr McCarthy also
served on the staff of Representative Thomas W. Ewing (R-IL) where he handled
trade and tax issues (1995-1998).
Mr McCarthy earned a
bachelor's degree in Political Science from