Ambasssador (Rtd). Howard W. Gutman is the Managing Director of The Gutman Group, an international consulting and advisory practice focusing on energy, finance, trade, infrastructure, real estate, market access, and related strategic foreign policy issues. He also serves as a Member of the Board of Directors of Exmar, a leading independent LNG and LPG Carrier Owner and Operator and a provider of industrial marine and energy logistical solutions for transport, regasification and liquefaction within the oil and gas industry, with offices in Europe and America. Ambassador (Rtd.) Gutman is a Member of the Board of Managers of DTH (Downtown Holding) Partners LLC, a New York real estate development company, with a heavy participation by European parties. Howard Gutman has become the Chair of SR2, a sophisticated hardware and software platform for commercial drones. He is on the Board of Advisors of several start-up companies in the technology and finance space. He is a frequent speaker at conferences and meetings, focusing among other topics on European-U.S. relationship, energy, trade and the changing patterns in the world.
Howard recently joined the Board of Advisors of Infralinx. Infralinx Capital is a specialist infrastructure investment and development company, combining principal investment of seed capital, alternative capital sourcing and advisory services to support infrastructure development across the transaction cycle and capital structure.
Howard Gutman was nominated by President Barack Obama to be U.S. Ambassador to the Kingdom of Belgium and was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on July 24, 2009. He was sworn in on August 14, 2009. He served as the U.S. Ambassador to Belgium until July 23, 2013, becoming the third longest serving U.S. ambassador to Belgium in over 100 years. Ambassador Gutman has been called “the most popular ambassador ever” by one Belgian newspaper and “The Ambassador Who Made Us Love America Again” by a leading Belgian magazine. As Secretary Clinton noted during her last visit to Brussels, during Ambassador Gutman’s tenure, the favorability rating for U.S. leadership in Belgium increased 600% and in 2012, Belgium finished first in the world with the highest increase in favorability towards U.S. leadership.
Before being named Ambassador, Howard Gutman was a partner with the Washington D.C. law firm of Williams & Connolly LLP. In his over twenty-six years with the firm, Mr. Gutman handled the full gamut of litigation, investigation, and counseling matters. Identified as one of “Washington’s Top Lawyers” byWashingtonian magazine (December 2004, December 2007) and selected to numerous “Superlawyers” and similar attorney award lists, Mr. Gutman’s areas of practice focused on the complete range of complex commercial litigation, including securities, contracts, antitrust, labor, banking, real estate, intellectual property, insurance coverage, international law and partnership disputes; the representation of some of the nation’s leading law firms and accounting firms in malpractice actions and partnership disputes; the representation of corporations, labor unions, and individuals in a variety of high-profile white collar criminal investigations and prosecutions; and many types of tort actions. Such cases were located in various federal and state courts throughout the United States, before various regulatory agencies, and in foreign tribunals.
Earlier in his career, Howard Gutman served as a Special Assistant to F.B.I Director William H. Webster, focusing on counter-terrorism and counter-intelligence; as a law clerk to Justice Potter Stewart (Retd.) on the United States Supreme Court; and as a law clerk to Judge Irving L. Goldberg on the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.
Howard Gutman served as an adviser to a variety of Democratic candidates, including assisting in races for President, Governor, Senate, and Congress. He assisted the 2008 Obama campaign on constituency work, media and fundraising and was a Trustee on the Obama Presidential Inauguration Committee. He assisted the Gore campaign in the post-election litigation in 2000. Mr. Gutman has been a contributor to numerous television and radio programs, including frequent appearances on the Fox News Network during the 2008 Presidential campaign. Mr. Gutman appeared in several episodes of the HBO series “K Street,” playing (not surprisingly) a Washington attorney and has made other movie and media appearances, including playing Tim Robbins’ lawyer in “Noise” and a high school parent in the 2009 release of “Fame.” Mr. Gutman served as an Editor of Litigation Magazine for over 24 years and an active participant in the ABA’s Litigation Section. He was also for many years a member of the Board of the Washington Hebrew Home in Rockville, Maryland.