Irwin Steven Goldstein, President Donald Trump’s selection for under secretary of state for public diplomacy and public affairs, is a communications and marketing executive with experience at large corporations as well as in government.
Goldstein was confirmed by a Senate voice vote and in the middle of November and is expected to start working at the State Department on December 4.
At the time of his nomination by Trump, he was the senior vice president of BP Global Solutions, a New York consulting firm.
According to the bio on that company’s website, Goldstein “has a passion for building compelling brands and developing and executing communications strategies that connect diverse audiences.”
In a written statement to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee after his nomination, Goldstein wrote, “Those who seek to undermine America do so by spreading misinformation about our people and our objectives. We can fight these efforts by inspiring the world with our shared humanity and our great compassion.”
Moira Whelan, who served as the deputy assistant secretary for digital strategy at the State Department during the Obama administration, said Goldstein would be a potential lead in the fight to combat Russia’s dissemination of false information about the United States.
In an article last month in Foreign Policy magazine she wrote: “In September, U.S. President Donald Trump announced his intention to nominate Irwin Steven Goldstein as under secretary for public diplomacy at the State Department. He would be a key player in the effort to push back against Russian disinformation efforts around the world and in the United States.”
Goldstein’s qualifications do match those of his predecessors — former White House senior adviser Karen Hughes during George W. Bush’s administration and the former Time editor Richard Stengel during Obama’s.
His experience includes seven years as executive vice president and chief communications officer for TIAA, a Fortune 100 financial services firm providing retirement security to individuals in the not-for-profit sector.
Goldstein served as vice president and chief communications officer for Dow Jones/The Wall Street Journal during the period following the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. In the administration of President George H.W. Bush, he was an assistant to the secretary and the director of public affairs at the U.S. Department of the Interior. He previously was a press secretary and chief of staff on Capitol Hill.
As senior vice president of BP Global Solutions, he advises start-up technology ventures in the transportation and health care spaces.