About the Expert

Expert Bio

Brent McIntosh is an adjunct senior fellow for international economics and finance at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR). From 2019 until 2021, he served as under secretary of the treasury for international affairs, where he led the Treasury Department’s engagement in the G7 and G20, represented the United States on the Financial Stability Board, and managed U.S. participation at the IMF and World Bank. He oversaw Treasury’s international economic and financial policy work, including significant engagements on investment security and digital currencies. During 2020, he coordinated several initiatives to alleviate the COVID-19 pandemic’s economic consequences.

From 2017 to 2019, McIntosh served as Treasury’s general counsel, leading the department’s approximately 2,000 lawyers and spearheading its regulatory reform efforts. Prior to that, he was a partner in the law firm of Sullivan & Cromwell, where his practice focused on complex disputes involving financial institutions and multinational corporations, and was co-head of the firm’s cybersecurity practice.

McIntosh served in the White House from 2006 until 2009, first as associate counsel to the president and then as deputy assistant to the president and deputy staff secretary. Before that, he served as a deputy assistant attorney general at the Justice Department, where his work focused on national security matters.

A Michigan native, McIntosh holds an AB in economics and political science from the University of Michigan and a JD from Yale Law School. Following law school, he was a law clerk to two federal appellate judges, Dennis Jacobs of the Second Circuit and Laurence H. Silberman of the DC Circuit. He is a member of the Bretton Woods Committee, the International Institute for Strategic Studies, and the Reagan Institute Strategy Group.


  • The Alexander Hamilton Society, board of directors
  • The National Security Institute at George Mason University's Antonin Scalia Law School, board of advisors