Michael Posner is the Jerome Kohlberg Professor of Ethics and Finance at NYU’s Stern School of Business and the Director of its Center for Business and Human Rights. The Center for Business and Human Rights at the NYU Stern School of Business is the first-ever human rights center within a business school.
Previously, Michael served in the Obama Administration as Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, and prior to that he was President of Human Rights First. Earlier in his career, Michael was a lawyer with Sonnenschein, Nath & Rosenthal. He is recognized as a leader and expert in advancing a rights-based approach to national security, challenging the practice of torture, combating discrimination, and advocating for refugee protection. He is a frequent public commentator on these issues and has testified dozens of times before the United States Congress.
Michael's philanthropic work includes serving as a Board Member of Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights, an appointment that highlights his extensive work as a prominent voice in support of human rights protections, in global business operations in the manufacturing supply chain, the extractives industry, and the information and communications technology sector. He helped found the Fair Labor Association, was a Founding Member of the Global Network Initiative, and has spoken widely on the issue of internet freedom. Michael spearheaded the U.S. Government's efforts to enhance the effectiveness of the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights and played a key role in proposing and campaigning for the first U.S. law providing for political asylum, as well as the Torture Victim Protection Act.
Michael lectured at Yale Law School, at one time teaching with former Dean Harold Koh. He was a visiting lecturer at Columbia University Law School, and is a Member of the California Bar and the Illinois Bar.