Mark Brzezinski


Ambassador (ret.) Mark Brzezinski is founder and principal of Brzezinski Strategies LLC. Previously, he worked for Makena Capital Management where he led the firm’s sustainability efforts and assists in responding to the growing demand for environmentally and socially responsible investment portfolios.

Mark brings extensive foreign policy experience and a wealth of global relationships. Prior to joining Makena, Mark served as the United States Ambassador to Sweden between 2011-2015. This was a period in which the U.S. Embassy in Stockholm was recognized for spearheading innovative new approaches to advance U.S.-European trade and landing key Swedish investments, including Volvo’s decision to invest $1 billion to build a factory in South Carolina, the first time ever Volvo will have an auto assembly plant in the U.S.  During his tenure as Ambassador, U.S. commercial diplomacy efforts in the Nordic region were consolidated in the U.S. Embassy in Sweden.  Mark arranged the first-ever U.S. Presidential visit to Stockholm in 2013, which brought together all five heads of governments of the Nordic countries for a summit that galvanized a U.S.-Nordic strategic approach on energy, innovation and sustainability.  For his service, Mark was awarded the Royal Order of the Polar Star by the King of Sweden, a high honor rarely bestowed on a foreign ambassador.  In 2015, Mark was asked by the White House to lead a strategic effort on the Arctic.  As the first Executive Director of the White House’s Arctic Executive Steering Committee, Mark spearheaded President Obama’s historic engagement in the Arctic and was the driving force behind the White House’s hosting of the first-ever Arctic Science Ministerial.  His leadership resulted in new markers being set for commercial development in the fragile Arctic region.  Before joining the Obama Administration, Mark was a partner in Washington, D.C. at McGuireWoods LLP, where he helped build the law firm’s international compliance practice.  From 1999 to 2001, Mark served on President Clinton’s National Security Council staff, first as a Director for Russia and Eurasia, and then as a Director for the Balkans.  Mark received his BA from Dartmouth College, his JD from the University of Virginia (where he was a member of the Law Review), and a Doctorate in Political Science from Oxford University.  He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), where he has served on the board of advisors of CFR’s Corporate Program.  Mark was a Fulbright Scholar in Poland in 1991-93, and in 2010 President Obama named him to the U.S. State Department’s Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board which oversees the Fulbright and other U.S. government exchange programs.  In January 2018, Mark served as a University of Virginia adjunct professor, co-teaching the “World of Investing” course at the McIntire School of Commerce. 

In 2019, he was named a member of the Trilateral Commission.

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