Ambassador Steven Pifer

Ambassador Steven Pifer

Nonresident Senior Fellow, Arms Control and Non-Proliferation Initiative
Brookings Institution

Ambassador Steven Pifer is a nonresident senior fellow of the Brookings Arms Control and Non-Proliferation Initiative and a Senior Fellow with the Center for 21st Century Security and Intelligence and the Center on the United States and Europe in the Foreign Policy program at Brookings. He is a retired Foreign Service Officer with more than 25 years with the State Department, and specializes in arms control, Russia and Ukraine.

Ambassador Steven Pifer is a nonresident senior fellow in the Arms Control and Non-Proliferation Initiative, Strobe Talbott Center for Security, Strategy, and Technology, and the Center on the United States and Europe at the Brookings Institution, and an affiliate of the Center for International Security and Cooperation (CISAC) at Stanford University. He previously was a resident fellow, then senior fellow at Brookings from April 2008-July 2017, a William J. Perry Fellow at CISAC from September 2018-June 2022, and a fellow at the Robert Bosch Academy in Berlin from January-May 2021.

A retired Foreign Service officer, he has more than 25 years of experience with the State Department. He served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State in the Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs with responsibilities for Russia and Ukraine, as Ambassador to Ukraine, and as Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for Russia, Ukraine, and Eurasia on the National Security Council. He also served at the U.S. embassies in Warsaw, Moscow, and London, as well as with the U.S. delegation to the negotiation on intermediate-range nuclear forces in Geneva.

From 2000 to 2001, he was a visiting scholar at Stanford’s Institute for International Studies.

His expertise are focused on arms control, Russia and Ukraine. He regularly comments on these issues in the media, and has featured on National Public Radio, PBS NewsHour, CNN, Fox News, BBC, and VOA.

He is the author of The Eagle and the Trident: U.S.-Ukraine Relations in Turbulent Times, and co-author of The Opportunity: Next Steps in Reducing Nuclear Arms. He has also written ‘Nuclear Arms Control Choices for the Next Administration’; ‘Obama’s Faltering Nuclear Legacy: the 3 R’s’; ‘Bilateral and Multilateral Nuclear Arms Reductions’; and ‘Ukraine’s Perilous Balancing Act’. His writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Financial Times, The National Interest, The Moscow Times, and The Kyiv Post.

Ambassador Pifer is a 1976 graduate of Stanford University with a Bachelor’s in Economics.