Alex Wong is a senior fellow at Hudson Institute. His research spans U.S. national security policy and foreign affairs, with a particular focus on U.S. strategy in the Indo-Pacific region and the future of the Korean Peninsula.
Mr. Wong most recently served as the Deputy Special Representative for North Korea and the Deputy Assistant Secretary for North Korea at the U.S. Department of State. In that position, he was the No. 2 negotiator in denuclearization talks with North Korea and led the formulation and implementation of U.S. diplomatic and technical policy across multiple executive branch agencies. He also guided the U.S.-led international pressure campaign on North Korea, including sanctions policy, counterproliferation, diplomatic isolation, and combatting illicit DPRK cyber activity.
Prior to assuming his North Korea duties, Mr. Wong led the State Department’s efforts to implement the Free & Open Indo-Pacific Strategy as the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Regional & Security Affairs in the State Department’s East Asia bureau. He promoted an economics-driven set of policies and programs to forge bilateral, multilateral, and private-sector partnerships to strategically expand high-standard infrastructure investment, diversify trade relationships and energy flows, and improve investment climates across South Asia, East Asia, and the Pacific.
In 2020, Mr. Wong was nominated and unanimously approved by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to be the U.S. Ambassador for Special Political Affairs at the United Nations, a position in which he would have represented the United States on all matters before the U.N. Security Council.
Prior to his most recent stint at the State Department, Mr. Wong was the Foreign Policy Advisor & General Counsel to Senator Tom Cotton (R-Ark.). He was the senator’s chief advisor on issues related to national security, international relations, and law enforcement. Mr. Wong was also the Foreign & Legal Policy Director for the Romney-Ryan 2012 presidential campaign, leading the development of foreign, defense, intelligence, and law enforcement policy and closely advising the nominees on these matters. Mr. Wong previously served as Iraq Rule of Law Advisor for the State Department at the height of the military surge strategy. He designed and implemented the department’s efforts to reconstruct and modernize Iraq’s judicial branch, anticorruption agencies, and criminal code.
Mr. Wong is a licensed attorney. He spent years counseling Fortune 100 clients on international trade and governmental investigations matters at a Washington, DC-based international firm. He began his legal career as a clerk for the honorable Janice Rogers Brown of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.
Mr. Wong received his J.D. with high honors from Harvard Law School where he was the Managing Editor of the Harvard Law Review and an editor of the Harvard International Law Journal. He graduated summa cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania with a bachelors degree in English literature and French.