More than 20 years of experience in U.S.-China economic and security relations; interagency coordination in U.S. government; non-profit management and fundraising Industry
White House, State Department, USTR, Commerce Department. non-profit CEO, think-tank chief of staff, international trade advisor
Carola McGiffert is Managing Director on BGR’s international government relations team, where she leads the firm’s growing China practice to help U.S. and Chinese companies do business and navigate policy issues.
She is a veteran of the Clinton and Obama administrations, having served in the White House, the State Department, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative and the Department of Commerce. Outside of government, she has worked in the private and non-profit sectors focusing on U.S.-China economic and strategic relations.
Just prior to joining BGR, Carola was CEO of the U.S.-China Strong Foundation, a non-profit a global non-profit she established in 2012 to strengthen U.S. competitiveness and collaboration with China. During her tenure, Carola more than doubled Foundation’s operational budget, oversaw the expansion of its footprint to include the opening of an office in Beijing, and positioned the organization as a strategic priority for both Washington and Beijing. The Foundation was an outgrowth of a bilateral U.S.-China initiative, which she directed from the State Department under Secretary Hillary Clinton from 2010-2012.
From 2002 to 2009, Carola worked at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), a Washington, D.C. think-tank, as chief of staff to CEO John Hamre and later as a senior fellow focusing on U.S.-China relations. She also has private sector experience helping U.S. companies doing business in China, both at StratAsia, the consulting firm she co-founded, and with former USTR Mickey Kantor at Mayer, Brown & Platt, the global law firm.
Carola received a Bachelor of Arts in Government and Economics from Wesleyan University and an Master of Arts in Chinese Studies from Johns Hopkins School of International Studies (SAIS). She is a member of the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations and the Women’s Foreign Policy Group, as well as a guest blogger for The Huffington Post. She lives in Washington, D.C. with her two sons.