May 15, 2018: Robert C. O’Brien was appointed as the White House Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs on Thursday, May 10, 2018. O’Brien, a lawyer, diplomat and author, is a founding partner at Larson O’Brien LLP. His practice focuses on complex litigation and international arbitration. O’Brien has government and private sector experience in national security and foreign policy issues. He has worked as an arbitrator in more than twenty international proceedings, and he has been appointed by the federal court system as a Special Master in more than a dozen cases. O’Brien was previously appointed as a Representative to the 60th Session of the United Nations General Assembly in 2005; he was the Co-Chairman of the U.S. Department of State’s Public-Private Partnership for Justice Reform in Afghanistan from 2007 to 2001; and he was appointed as a Member of the U.S. Cultural Property Advisory Committee in 2008. He was a Senior Legal Officer at the United Nations Security Council in Geneva, Switzerland, from 1996 to 1998. Obrien received his law degree from Boalt Hall, University of California, Berkely, School of Law.