Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo Welcomes Bureau of Industry and Security Assistant Secretaries Kendler and Axelrod

Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo welcomed President Biden’s nominees to serve as Assistant Secretaries of Commerce at the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS), Thea D. Rozman Kendler and Matthew S. Axelrod, following their unanimous confirmations by the United States Senate.

“The Bureau of Industry and Security is at the forefront of some of the most consequential matters facing our national security and economy, and I am thrilled to welcome Thea and Matt to the Department of Commerce’s leadership team,” said Secretary Raimondo. “BIS plays a key role in our strategic competition with China, advancement of U.S. technological leadership, and promotion of secure trade that benefits the American people and global stability. Thea and Matt are highly qualified, experienced national security professionals and I look forward to working with them to advance President Biden’s agenda on these and many other issues.”

“National security, foreign policy, economics, and technology are more interconnected than ever, and these issues all converge in BIS. We are at the forefront of our nation’s response to the challenges involving China, Russia, supply chains, and emerging and foundational technologies, just to name a few,” said Assistant Secretary Kendler, “While these issues are complex, I have great confidence in the dedicated professionals of Export Administration. I look forward to working with my interagency counterparts and with our allies to ensure we have a rigorous and effective export control system that furthers global security.”

“The United States distinguishes itself in the international rules-based order through its commitment to democracy, human rights, and the rule of law. I’ve dedicated my career to these principles and am honored to join an Administration that has put those principles at the heart of its agenda,” said Assistant Secretary Axelrod. “I am humbled to lead the highly-effective team of national security professionals at Export Enforcement as we contend with efforts by China, Russia, Iran, non-state actors, and others to divert peaceful commerce to malign ends.”

Thea D. Rozman Kendler was confirmed by the United States Senate on December 14, 2021 and began service as the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Export Administration on December 20. In this role, Ms. Kendler leads Export Administration’s highly trained technical professionals in controlling the export of dual-use and military items for national security and foreign policy reasons, analyzing the impact of export controls, and supporting the U.S. defense industrial base. Among other responsibilities, Ms. Kendler chairs the Advisory Committee on Export Policy (ACEP), which resolves interagency policy disputes related to export license applications submitted to BIS. To advance U.S. national security and foreign policy interests, Ms. Kendler regularly engages with Congress, industry, academia, and other stakeholders on the nature and scope of BIS’s activities and the Export Administration Regulations (EAR).

Matthew S. Axelrod was confirmed by the United States Senate on December 18, 2021 and began service as Assistant Secretary for Export Enforcement on December 28, 2021. In this capacity, Mr. Axelrod leads an elite cadre of special agents and analysts dedicated to the enforcement of the country’s export control laws. Mr. Axelrod and his team help to protect and promote U.S. national security and foreign policy objectives by stopping exports of sensitive goods and technologies that can be put to malign purposes like weapons-of-mass-destruction proliferation, military and military-intelligence applications, terrorism, and human rights abuses. They also work to ensure U.S. persons do not participate in unsanctioned foreign boycotts. Additional biographical information on Assistant Secretary Kendler and Assistant Secretary Axelrod is available here.

For more information, visit www.bis.doc.gov.

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