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Our Team

Adnan Kifayat

CSIF Board of Advisors


Adnan Kifayat serves on the Board of Advisors of the Center on Sanctions and Illicit Finance at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies.

Mr. Kifayat is a senior resident fellow at the German Marshall Fund, where he advises the organization on its efforts to strengthen leadership development and Next Generation strategies in the transatlantic region. He also contributes to the continued development of GMF’s Leadership, Diversity and Inclusion Initiative.

Over the last 15 years, he has held senior positions in public service, including at the White House, State Department, and Treasury Department, where he established partnerships with strategic allies to cooperate in trade, finance, development, counterterrorism and national security. He has helped develop innovative and sustainable mechanisms to counter the spread of violent extremism and prevent the flow of funds to terrorist organizations.

Mr. Kifayat most recently served as Secretary of State John Kerry’s acting special representative to Muslim communities and was instrumental in creating programs to broaden and deepen U.S. diplomatic engagement through social entrepreneurship, political empowerment, and shared commitments to security. As senior advisor to the under secretary of state for public diplomacy, he led the development and deployment of the Public Diplomacy 2.0 Initiative, which helped transform the State Department into a new media-savvy institution. His work at the Treasury Department resulted in initiatives and agreements to promote financial cooperation between the United States and key partners in the Middle East, G8, and Asia. He served as an alternate executive director of the African Development Bank Group, shaping Bank activities on the African continent. He served twice on the National Security Council staff to coordinate counterterrorism and economic issues across the Middle East and Africa.

Mr. Kifayat previously worked with Cargill to develop strategies to access Central Asian and Latin American agribusiness markets, and with Delphi International to design and implement U.S. people-to-people exchange programs all over the world.