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“Hudson Institute brings clear and fresh-eyed thinking to the challenges of the 21st century.ˮ —SEN. TOM COTTON (AR)

Letter from the Chairman and the President & CEO

2017 was another year of visibility and influence for Hudson Institute.


As the Obama era came to an end and the Trump presidency began, officials in Washington and around the globe turned to Hudson in unprecedented numbers for the farsighted and unconventional policy advice that has been the Institute’s cornerstone since our founding in 1961.

Focused on policy and not politics, Hudson fellows were deeply involved in major debates. Our experts extensively consulted with administration officials during development of the new (December 2017) National Security Strategy. We offered key guidance about nuclear deterrence and missile defense; the fight against ISIS and other militant Islamic groups; countering Iran’s malign regional influence; and strengthening America’s overseas alliances. Senior Fellow Husain Haqqani—Pakistan’s former ambassador to the United States—played a widely acknowledged role in convincing the Trump administration to reduce its dependence on that country as a counter-terrorism ally. Senior Fellow Nina Shea’s efforts to defend religious liberty helped spur the administration to begin channeling more effective aid—directly through federal agencies—to persecuted minorities in the Middle East. Senior Fellows Rebeccah Heinrichs and Arthur Herman played a role in Congress’ decision to augment space-based and boost-phase missile-defense systems in the National Defense Authorization Act. Hudson—again—had a real impact.

In November, we honored a longtime friend, Vice President Mike Pence, at our annual Herman Kahn Award Dinner in New York City, with Rupert Murdoch providing the introduction.

Our Chairman’s Advisory Board events in New York City continued to draw key policymakers and opinion leaders, including U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley and Peter Thiel.

In Washington, we hosted officials from around the world: cabinet ministers from Asia, Europe, the Middle East, and Africa; leading political figures from South America; and a long list of highly placed American policymakers from both the executive branch and both houses of Congress.

Hudson does vital work to promote U.S. international leadership for a secure, free, and prosperous future. And none of that work would be possible without the extraordinary generosity of those who support the Institute and its experts. We are deeply grateful to all of you.

Best regards,


Research and Impact

“I regularly rely on Hudson Institute scholars to help inform my thinking in the way I help shape policy here in the Senate.” —SEN. TOM COTTON (AR)

HUDSON SIGNIFICANTLY EXPANDED its already formidable policy roster in 2017. Sorin Ducaru, the former NATO Assistant Secretary General for Emerging Security Challenges, is leading a new cybersecurity initiative for the Institute. Also joining us in 2017 were former Portuguese Secretary of State for European Affairs Bruno Maçães, Middle East stabilization and reconstruction expert Jonas Parello-Plesner, former Japanese Foreign Ministry security analyst Satoru Nagao, former top NSC staffer and technology export-control specialist Brandt Pasco, international relations and national security expert Tod Lindberg, and investigative journalist Ben Judah. And rejoining Hudson in 2017 was former Assistant Secretary of Commerce Tom Duesterberg, an expert on manufacturing, taxation, and trade policy. Each of these new additions had an immediate impact on a variety of Institute projects designed to strengthen the U.S. economy, rethink American diplomatic and security policy, and deepen our relationships with allied governments, like-minded think tanks, and universities overseas.


The rapid and alarming escalation of North Korea’s nuclear weapons program dominated news headlines for much of the year—and made Hudson’s ongoing research on WMD and next-generation security and defense technologies especially relevant and influential. Early in 2017, the Institute co-sponsored (with the Japanese Defense Ministry) a major global defense forum on the North Korean threat and how best to respond to it. And throughout the year, Senior Fellows Arthur Herman, Rebeccah Heinrichs, and Richard Weitz (who is leading an ambitious John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation initiative on nuclear counterproliferation) all worked tirelessly to explain the need for a speedy and substantial expansion and improvement of U.S. missile defense capabilities— in the pages of leading American newspapersand magazines; on the airwaves of American broadcast television networks; at a series of widely noted and well-received Hudson conferences, workshops, and panel discussions; and in numerous private briefings for relevant executive branch officials and House and Senate committee members and staff.

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