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Cameron Kerry
Cameron Kerry official portrait.jpeg
Acting United States Secretary of Commerce
In office
June 1, 2013 – June 26, 2013
PresidentBarack Obama
DeputyPatrick D. Gallagher (acting)
Preceded byRebecca Blank
Succeeded byPenny Pritzker
General Counsel of the United States Department of Commerce
In office
May 21, 2009 – September 4, 2013
PresidentBarack Obama
Preceded byLily Fu Claffee
Succeeded byKelly R. Welsh
Personal details
Cameron Forbes Kerry

(1950-09-06) September 6, 1950 (age 70)
Washington, D.C., U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)Kathy Weinman
RelationsSee Forbes family
ParentsRichard Kerry
Rosemary Forbes
EducationHarvard University (AB)
Boston College (JD)

Cameron Forbes Kerry (born September 6, 1950) is an American politician who served as general counsel of the U.S. Department of Commerce. He is the younger brother and political confidant of John Kerry, former Massachusetts Senator, 2004 presidential nominee, and former U.S. Secretary of State.[1]

Early life

Cameron Forbes Kerry was born on September 6, 1950, in Washington, D.C. He is the fourth child of U.S. diplomat Richard Kerry and Rosemary Forbes of the Forbes family and Dudley–Winthrop family. He graduated from Harvard College in 1972, and Boston College Law School in 1978.


In 1972 he served as strategy director for John Kerry for Congress. In 1973 he was a freelance writer and political consultant. From 1973 to 1974 he was a part time taxi driver for Cambridge Yellow Cab and later campaign director for Paul Guzzi for Secretary of State. After graduation from law school, Kerry was an associate with Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr in Washington, D.C. (1979-1982) and served as law clerk to U.S. Senior Circuit Judge Elbert Tuttle (1978-1979), former Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit (now the Eleventh Circuit). He was an Adjunct Professor of Telecommunications Law at Suffolk University Law School and has written on First Amendment and cable television issues from 1997 to 2002.[2] From 1983 to 2009 he was an associate and partner with Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky, and Popeo. In 1976 he was an intern for the Massachusetts Executive Office of Consumer Affairs. He was a summer associate with Ropes & Gray in 1977. In 1982 he served as campaign director for John Kerry for Lieutenant Governor.

In 1983, Cameron Kerry converted from Roman Catholicism to Judaism before marrying Kathy Weinman.[3]

During his brother's presidential campaign, Cameron Kerry traveled across the country speaking to his brother's views on Israel, campaigning with Harvard Law School professor Alan Dershowitz, writer-comedian Larry David, and Jewish elected officials.[4] During that time Kerry also served as an influential advisor to his brother and played a role in decisions behind the scenes and as a campaign surrogate.[5]

In 2006, Cameron Kerry explored a run for Massachusetts Secretary of the Commonwealth but decided not to run when the Democratic incumbent William F. Galvin announced that he would seek re-election.[6]

During the 2008 presidential campaign, he was the Vice-Chair of the National Jewish Democratic Council and defended Barack Obama in the Jewish press.[7]

On April 20, 2009, President Obama nominated him, and on May 21, 2009, he was confirmed unanimously by the United States Senate as the General Counsel of the Department of Commerce. In this role, Kerry was the principal legal advisor to the Secretary of Commerce and third-ranking secretarial officer. He served as the department's chief legal officer and oversees the work of over 325 lawyers in 14 offices. Kerry also served as the department's chief ethics officer, and co-chaired the secretary's Internet Policy Task Force, which brings together Commerce agencies with expertise on the internet in the 21st-century global economy.[8]

Kerry was appointed Acting United States Secretary of Commerce on June 1, 2013,[9] and resumed his position as general counsel on June 26, 2013, when Penny Pritzker was sworn in as the 38th Secretary of Commerce. As the General Counsel of the Department of Commerce, Kerry was the principal legal advisor to the Secretary of Commerce and third-ranking secretarial officer. He resigned his position on September 4, 2013.[10]

From 2014 to 2019 he served as senior counsel with Sidley Austin.[11] Since 2013 he has been a visiting scholar with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media Lab and a Tisch distinguished visiting fellow with the Brookings Institution.[11]

Personal life

He and his wife, Kathy Weinman, have two daughters and live in Massachusetts.[12]


  1. ^ "Cameron F. Kerry". The Washington Post. July 25, 2012.
  2. ^ "Mintz Levin Cohn Ferris Glovsky and Popeo Biography". Archived from the original on 2011-07-14. Retrieved 2009-03-19.
  3. ^ "Cameron Kerry and his in-laws talk of the Democratic frontrunner". Detroit Jewish News. Archived from the original on 2006-11-14. Retrieved 2006-08-27.
  4. ^ Neuman, Johanna (October 29, 2004). "Kerry's entree to Jewish vote". Los Angeles Times.
  5. ^ O'Brien, Timothy L. (February 15, 2004). "The 2004 Campaign: The Confidant; Kerry Turns to His Brother For Help on Big Decisions". New York Times. Retrieved April 28, 2010.
  6. ^ Phillips, Frank (July 27, 2005). "Kerry's brother mulls a run". Boston Globe.
  7. ^ "Obama is calling to Jews". Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA). Archived from the original on 2012-05-09.
  8. ^ Profile,; accessed August 5, 2015.
  9. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-06-02. Retrieved 2013-06-03.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  10. ^ "Cameron F. Kerry". Office of the Chief Counsel. Department of Commerce. Retrieved 29 January 2018.
  11. ^ a b LinkedIn Profile
  12. ^ Cameron F. Kerry bio
Political offices
Preceded by
Rebecca Blank
United States Secretary of Commerce

Succeeded by
Penny Pritzker
This page was last edited on 31 October 2020, at 22:50
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