Jeffrey Rathke

Jeff Rathke

President of AICGS

Jeffrey Rathke is the President of the American Institute for Contemporary German Studies at the Johns Hopkins University in Washington, DC.

Prior to joining AICGS, Jeff was a senior fellow and deputy director of the Europe Program at CSIS, where his work focused on transatlantic relations and U.S. security and defense policy. Jeff joined CSIS in 2015 from the State Department, after a 24-year career as a Foreign Service Officer, dedicated primarily to U.S. relations with Europe. He was director of the State Department Press Office from 2014 to 2015, briefing the State Department press corps and managing the Department’s engagement with U.S. print and electronic media. Jeff led the political section of the U.S. Embassy in Kuala Lumpur from 2011 to 2014. Prior to that, he was deputy chief of staff to the NATO Secretary General in Brussels. He also served in Berlin as minister-counselor for political affairs (2006–2009), his second tour of duty in Germany. His Washington assignments have included deputy director of the Office of European Security and Political Affairs and duty officer in the White House Situation Room and State Department Operations Center.

Mr. Rathke was a Weinberg Fellow at Princeton University (2003–2004), winning the Master’s in Public Policy Prize. He also served at U.S. Embassies in Dublin, Moscow, and Riga, which he helped open after the collapse of the Soviet Union. Mr. Rathke has been awarded national honors by Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania, as well as several State Department awards. He holds an M.P.P. degree from Princeton University and B.A. and B.S. degrees from Cornell University. He speaks German, Russian, and Latvian.


Recent Content


Jeff Rathke on Obama’s Views of Relationships with Key EU Partners

AICGS President Jeff Rathke joined Deutsche Welle’s The Day with Brent Goff to discuss excerpts from President Barack Obama’s recently published memoir, in which Obama discusses the United States’ as …

Jeff Rathke on the Biden Administration’s Approach to Europe

Looking at how a new Biden administration will approach Europe, AICGS President Jeff Rathke is cautious, telling Handelsblatt (in German) that domestic concerns will supersede foreign relations, especially when politically …

Episode 34: Berlin Wall: The View from the West

Images of the fall of the Berlin Wall dominate the public consciousness when thinking about the end of the Cold War. Photos of jubilant Germans standing atop the symbol of …

Episode 33: The German Approach to China and the Indo-Pacific

Germany’s relationship with China is one of Berlin’s top priorities. In the past few years, a crucial debate has taken place in Germany and has broadened the issues in the …

Jeff Rathke on Transatlantic Relations after the U.S. Election

Asked how transatlantic relations should look after the U.S. presidential election, AICGS President Jeff Rathke tells Handelsblatt (in German) that Washington should prioritize shared interests where the U.S. and its …

Episode 32: Global Trade and Economic Dynamics

On this episode of The Zeitgeist, Mike Froman, Chairman of the Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth and U.S. Trade Representative during the Obama administration, joins AICGS’ Jeff Rathke and Peter …

Jeff Rathke on Virtual UN Diplomacy

AICGS President Jeff Rathke comments to the AP’s Ted Anthony on this week’s UN General Assembly and the limitation of virtual diplomacy, saying, “There’s subtlety that’s lost, and you also …

Jeff Rathke on Suspension of 29 Police Officers with Neo-Nazi Propaganda

AICGS President Jeff Rathke joins PRX’s The World to discuss the recent suspension of twenty-nine police officers in North Rhine-Westphalia, charged with sharing neo-Nazi propaganda. He notes that while German …

Jeff Rathke on How U.S. Election Could Affect European Politics in The Washington Times

AICGS President Jeff Rathke tells The Washington Times that, “You’ll have the outsiders feeling like they’re back on the move again because Donald Trump pulled off another victory in the …

Episode 31: How Ike Led: A Conversation with Susan Eisenhower

Germany was a part of President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s life from his earliest days—his family descended from German immigrants and lived in a tight-knit, pious community in Kansas.  As Supreme …

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