Acting Assistant Attorney General of the National Security Division: Who is Mary McCord?

Saturday, February 11, 2017
Mary McCord

Mary B. McCord was appointed principal deputy assistant attorney general of the National Security Division (NSD) of the U.S. Department of Justice on October 21, 2014, and took over as acting assistant attorney general on October 15, 2016.

 

McCord graduated from Georgetown University Law School, and subsequently served as a law clerk for Judge Thomas Hogan of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

 

McCord then joined the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, where she worked for nearly 20 years. She initially served as a deputy chief in the Appellate Division, overseeing and arguing cases in the U.S. and District of Columbia Courts of Appeals. She held that position for more than five years, and then worked her way up to being the U.S. Attorney Office’s criminal division chief. In that post, she oversaw all criminal prosecutions in federal district court.

 

Joining NSD put McCord in charge of the division’s 400 employees who collectively are tasked with carrying out the counterterrorism, counterespionage and counterintelligence functions of the Justice Department. In her post, McCord has interacted with the 94 U.S. Attorney offices across the country.

 

She replaced Assistant U.S. Attorney General John Carlin, who left the division to enter the private sector as chair of the global risk and crisis management team for the international law firm of Morrison & Foerster.

 

McCord is married to Sheldon Snook, who also worked for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia. In fact, it was McCord who got her husband his job as administrative assistant and court liaison to the public and news media by recommending him to Judge Hogan. Snook also served as spokesman for the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. He currently works in a similar capacity for the U.S. Supreme Court.

-Danny Biederman

 

To Learn More:

Interview with Mary McCord (“Communicators on the State of the Net,” C-SPAN; McCord interview begins at 20:40)

Mary McCord Testimony to the House Financial Services Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations on subject of 2016 U.S. cash transfer to Iran (“Road to the White House,” C-SPAN; McCord testimony begins at 28:12)

Official Biography

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