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Ruth Wedgwood

Ruth Wedgwood

Ruth Wedgwood is the Burling Professor of International Law and Diplomacy at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS).  Her involvement in national security law spans three decades. As a young prosecutor in the Southern District of New York, she arrested a Soviet trade attaché for nuclear espionage after a dramatic hand-off of a highly classified document in New York City; he was later traded to the Russians in exchange for western operatives. She also investigated and prosecuted the illegal transshipment of military equipment and electronics to Russia, North Korea, Iran, and Iraq.  While serving as legal counsel and special assistant to the chief of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, she designed the innovative trial procedures for the Kampiles espionage case—involving the compromise of the operating manual for the highly classified KH-11 spy satellite by a CIA employee—that became the model for the Classified Information Procedures Act (CIPA).  Professor Wedgwood has advised two Secretaries of Defense as a member of the Pentagon’s Defense Policy Board, and has served on the Secretary of State’s Advisory Committees on International Law and the CIA Historical Review Panel. She was formerly a tenured member of the Yale Law School faculty, and was the first female to hold the Charles Stockton chair at the U.S. Naval War College.  Dr. Wedgwood is a magna cum laude graduate of Harvard University and Yale Law School, where she was the first woman to serve as executive editor of the Yale Law Journal and received the Peres Prize for the finest legal writing.  She was part of the advisory group of the Hart-Rudman Commission on Threats in the Twenty-First Century, and a founding member of the Davos World Economic Forum’s Council on International Law.  She served two terms as the American member on the United Nations Human Rights Committee and was U.S. delegate to the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. She is vice chair of Freedom House, and president of the American Branch of the International Law Association.  She is also a Counselor and former Vice President of the American Society of International Law, as well as President-elect of the worldwide International Law Association.   Additional information.