President Trump Wednesday said he will nominate former Justice Department criminal division chief Christopher Wray to be the next FBI director, replacing James Comey, whom Trump fired and who testified before Congress Thursday.
“I will be nominating Christopher A. Wray, a man of impeccable credentials, to be the new Director of the FBI. Details to follow,” Trump tweeted.
I will be nominating Christopher A. Wray, a man of impeccable credentials, to be the new Director of the FBI. Details to follow.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 7, 2017
Wray ran the criminal division as assistant attorney general from 2003 to 2005 under George W. Bush. He also served as New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s attorney during the Bridgegate scandal, an indication that Christie may have played some role in his appointment.
He is a partner at the law firm King & Spaulding. According to the firm’s website:
Wray chairs the King & Spalding Special Matters and Government Investigations Practice Group, which represents companies, audit and special committees, and individuals in a variety of white-collar criminal and regulatory enforcement matters, parallel civil litigation, and internal corporate investigations.
Prior to joining the firm, Mr. Wray served from 2003 to 2005 as the Assistant Attorney General in charge of the U.S. Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Criminal Division, having been nominated by the President and confirmed by the U.S. Senate’s unanimous consent for that position. Mr. Wray helped lead the Department’s efforts to address the wave of corporate fraud scandals and restore integrity to U.S. financial markets. He served on the President’s Corporate Fraud Task Force and oversaw the Enron Task Force and other major fraud investigations, both around the country and internationally.
Mr. Wray first joined the DOJ’s leadership as Associate Deputy Attorney General in May 2001 and was soon appointed the Principal Associate Deputy Attorney General in September of the same year, with oversight responsibilities spanning the full Department. From 1997 to 2001, Mr. Wray served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia.
Wray graduated, cum laude, from Yale University in 1989 and received his law degree in 1992 from Yale Law School, where he served as Executive Editor of the Yale Law Journal.
Wray has contributed thousands of dollars to Republican candidates over the past decade. He did not donate to any of the Republican presidential candidates in 2016, though he did give $2,500 to Mitt Romney’s campaign during the 2012 general election. His most recent donation, according to Open Secrets, was a $2,000 gift to the Republican National Committee.