Robert S. Mueller III, whose 12-year tenure as director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation ended in September, is joining Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP.
Mueller took his post at the bureau one week before 9/11 and, after being given a two-year term extension, became the longest-serving director of the bureau since J. Edgar Hoover.
In that time, he led the bureau’s evolution from an organization focused on domestic crime to a counter-terrorism agency responding to threats from international adversaries. As part of that transformation, he fought to give his agents expanded surveillance powers and in his final testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee attracted criticism after revealing that bureau used drones for domestic surveillance.
Mueller had a long career in government service, and, in addition to his leadership at the FBI, was U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of California, Assistant Attorney General in charge of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division and a federal prosecutor in San Francisco, Boston and the District of Columbia. He was also an officer in the Marine Corps.
“Bob was the Director who managed the transition of the FBI into an agency that dealt not only with the hardest criminal justice matters but also with the most challenging national security issues, including cyber-security threats. He has remade the relationship between the FBI and the private sector to better protect the nation,” Robert T. Novick, co-managing partner at WilmerHale, said in a statement.
Mueller was previously a partner at Hill and Barlow in the 1980s and a became a partner in 1993 at Hale and Dorr LLP before the firm merged with Wilmer Cutler Pickering LLP.
Currently, Mueller teaches at Stanford and is executive-in-residence for Georgetown University. He will split his time between California and Washington, D.C.
Mueller earned his law degree in 1973 from the University of Virginia School of Law. He earned a master’s degree in international relations in 1967 from New York University and graduated from Princeton University in 1966.