John Kerry

Special Presidential Envoy for Climate; Former Secretary of State

In January 2020, John Kerry was sworn in as the nation’s first special presidential envoy for climate and the first-ever principal to sit on the National Security Council entirely dedicated to climate change. Prior to joining the Biden Administration, Kerry served as the United States’ 68th Secretary of State from 2013 to 2017. As America’s top diplomat, he guided the Department’s strategy on nuclear nonproliferation, combating radical extremism, and the threat of climate change. His tenure was marked by the successful negotiation of the Iran nuclear deal and the Paris Climate Agreement.
From 1985 to 2013, he served as a U.S. Senator representing Massachusetts, and was chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee from 2009 to 2013.  He served in the U.S. Navy, completing two combat tours of duty in Vietnam for which he received a Silver Star, a Bronze Star with Combat V, and three Purple Hearts. He received his undergraduate degree from Yale University and his law degree from Boston College Law School.
Kerry is the best-selling author of A Call to Service: My Vision for a Better America, This Moment on Earth, as well as his recently published memoir, Every Day Is Extra, his first memoir. He served as the distinguished fellow for global affairs at Yale University and the visiting distinguished statesman for the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Kerry is a founding member of World War Zero, a bipartisan coalition of scientists, CEOs, military leaders, activists, artists, and others from all walks of life and every part of the political spectrum working together to tackle the climate crisis and move us toward a clean energy economy.  

Podcast Guest Appearances

John Kerry: The Global Dynamics Of Decarbonization

What will it take to get the world’s major economies off fossil fuels? In late 2019, former US senator and secretary of state John Kerry, declared a World War Zero on carbon pollution.

“It’s really putting the nation on a war footing to avoid the next pandemic which will be exacerbated by the climate crisis, and the way to get ahead of it is to prepare and make the decisions now,” says Kerry. “The long-term energy future of America is not going to be written in fossil fuels”

John Kerry, Gina McCarthy and Biden’s Climate Team

Joe Biden did not start out as the “climate candidate” – that was a title first claimed by Washington Governor Jay Inslee, one of  more than two dozen Democratic candidates jockeying for position in the early days of the 2020 presidential campaign.  When Inslee spoke on the Climate One stage in May of 2020, climate was top of mind for him. 

“Everybody’s got a to do list right on your refrigerator,” Inslee said. “This cannot be just on the next president's to do list, because if it's not job one, it won't get done.”