Jason E. Kearns has been named the Chairman of the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC). He succeeds outgoing Chairman David S. Johanson, who was serving as Chairman by operation of law through June 16, 2020. President Donald Trump designated Commissioner Kearns as Chairman for the term of June 17, 2020, through June 16, 2022.
Chairman Kearns was nominated to the USITC by President Barack Obama on January 17, 2017; re-nominated by President Donald Trump on June 29, 2017; and confirmed by the U.S. Senate on March 1, 2018, for the term expiring on December 16, 2024.
Chairman Kearns served as trade counsel for 11 years on the Democratic staff of the Committee on Ways and Means of the U.S. House of Representatives, including most recently as Chief International Trade Counsel. Prior to his employment at the Committee on Ways and Means, he was the Assistant General Counsel of the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative from 2003-2006.
Earlier in his career, Chairman Kearns practiced international trade law at the law firm of Wilmer, Culter & Pickering (now WilmerHale) from 2000-2003 and worked at the law firm of Mayer, Brown & Platt from 1995-1998, including a stint in the firm’s Bishkek, Kyrgyz Republic office.
Chairman Kearns holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Denver, a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Pennsylvania School of Law, and a Master of Public Policy degree from Harvard University. Originally from Keenesburg, Colorado, he resides in Washington D.C. with his wife, Lindy, and three children, Ellie, Keevan, and Sander.
The USITC is an independent, nonpartisan, quasi-judicial federal agency that makes determinations in proceedings involving imports claimed to injure a domestic industry, violations of intellectual property rights, or other unfair methods of competition in connection with imported goods; provides independent tariff, trade, and competitiveness-related analysis and information to the legislative and executive branches of government; and maintains the U.S. tariff schedule. The President may designate the Chairman and the Vice Chairman for two-year terms in those positions, or the most senior Commissioner of a party other than that of the outgoing Chairman may accede to the Chairman position by operation of law.