Nicholas Rasmussen is a Non-Resident Senior Fellow at the Reiss Center on Law and Security at NYU School of Law. Rasmussen is senior director of Counterterrorism and National Security at the McCain Institute, and is a national security expert with over twenty-seven years in U.S. government service. Beginning in 2001, Rasmussen served in a series of senior policy and intelligence positions with responsibility for terrorism and counterterrorism matters, most recently serving as director of the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC). Rasmussen held senior posts across three White House administrations, serving in senior positions on the National Security Council (NSC) staff under Presidents Bush and Obama before being appointed Director of NCTC by President Obama and continuing his tenure at the request of President Trump’s administration in 2017.
Rasmussen began his career at the Department of State in 1991 as a Presidential Management Intern and served at State for more than a decade in a variety of key positions. Rasmussen served as Special Assistant to Ambassador-at-Large Robert Gallucci supporting the negotiation and implementation of the U.S.-North Korea Agreed Framework as well as Special Assistant to the State Department’s Middle East Coordinator, Ambassador Dennis Ross, working on the Arab-Israeli peace process.
Rasmussen received his bachelor’s with High Honors from Wesleyan University and a Master’s degree in Public and International Affairs from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University. He is a Distinguished Professor of Practice at the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at Arizona State University.
Rasmussen has frequently provided expert analysis on terrorism and national security issues for the New York Times, the Washington Post, Time, CNN, Fox News, PBS and National Public Radio. He’s currently an intelligence and national security analyst and contributor for NBC and MSNBC. He is the recipient of the National Intelligence Distinguished Service Medal, the Director of National Intelligence’s Distinguished Service Award and the Distinguished Presidential Rank Award.