Lee A. Feinstein, whose experience includes more than two decades serving in high-level positions in diplomacy and foreign affairs, is founding dean of the School of Global and Lee A. Feinstein, whose experience includes more than two decades serving in high-level positions in diplomacy and foreign affairs, is founding dean of the School of Global and International Studies at Indiana University in Bloomington.
Feinstein has had a distinguished career in and out of government. A noted scholar-practitioner, Feinstein has served two secretaries of state and a secretary of defense, has worked at the nation’s top research institutes, including the Council on Foreign Relations and the Brookings Institution and has taught law and political science at the University of Georgia, the George Washington University, and the City University of New York.
Feinstein was President Obama’s first U.S. Ambassador to Poland. He was national security director to former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton during her 2008 presidential campaign and senior foreign policy advisor to President Barack Obama during the general election. Feinstein was the principal deputy director of policy planning to Secretary of State Madeleine Albright and was previously senior advisor on peacekeeping policy in the Office of the Secretary of Defense.
In Poland, Feinstein was at the helm of one of the largest U.S. embassies in the European Union. During his three-year tenure, he established the U.S. Aviation Air Force Detachment, the first permanent U.S. military presence in the country. In October 2012, President Bronislaw Komorowski awarded him the Commander’s Cross with the Star of the Order of Merit “for his outstanding contributions to Polish-American relations by strengthening cooperation between the Republic of Poland and the United States.”
Feinstein's research interests include foreign policy and international law, use of force, changing notions of sovereignty, and European secuirty and economics. He is the author, with Tod Lindberg of “Means to an End: U.S. Interest and the International Criminal Court” (Brookings Institutions Press, 2009, 2011). In its review, Foreign Affairs wrote, “Books of this sort are all too rare. Two foreign policy intellectuals, one liberal, one conservative, have come together to find common ground on a controversial foreign policy issue.” His current research project, “Allied Cooperation in Atrocity Situations,” under the auspices of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, involves study in five countries and the United Nations. Feinstein has written for numerous other publications, including Foreign Affairs, the Washington Post, and the National Interest. He is the author of the Council on Foreign Relations Special Report: “Darfur and Beyond: What Is Needed to Prevent Mass Atrocities”, and is a frequent commentator for the national and international media.
Prior to arriving on the Bloomington campus, Feinstein was senior director for Europe and Eurasia at McLarty Associates, a strategic advisory firm in Washington, DC. He was appointed the Carl E. Sanders Political Leadership Scholar in 2011 at the University of Georgia Law School at Athens, where he taught international law. Feinstein is presently a non-resident senior fellow at the German Marshall Fund of the United States. He has been a member of the Council on Foreign Relations since 1994. He is admitted to the bar of New York and Washington, D.C. He is a member of the Board of Trustees of The Kosciuszko Foundation in New York, and serves on the National Advisory Councils of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, and the Center for the National Interest.
Feinstein, a native of Valley Stream, N.Y., graduated cum laude from the Georgetown University Law Center. He holds a master’s degree in political science from the Graduate School and University Center of the City University of New York. His undergraduate degree is from Vassar College. He studied at the Pushkin Institute for Russian Language in 1980.
Feinstein is married to Elaine Monaghan, a journalist and communications professional, who serves as a strategic advisor to the Provost, and on the faculty of the Media School. They have two elementary age children.