The New York Times reported Wednesday night that William & Mary alumnus James B. Comey ’82 will be nominated by President Barack Obama as the next director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Comey, a former U.S. deputy attorney general known for his prosecution of some of the nation’s highest-profile criminal cases, has been chosen to replace outgoing Director Robert S. Mueller, according to the newspaper.
Comey, who graduated from William & Mary as a double major in chemistry and religion in 1982, has remained closely connected to the university. Comey spoke at 2003's and 2009's Opening Convocation ceremonies and at the 2008 Charter Day ceremony, where he received an honorary doctor of laws degree. Comey also served on the W&M Alumni Association's Board of Directors from 2008-2012, including serving as vice president from 2009-11. In 2011, the W&M Law School named Comey the Carter O. Lowance Fellow. The fellowship is one of the highest honors conferred by the Law School and W&M in recognition of significant public service.
Between 2003 and 2005, Comey held the second highest position at the Justice Department, serving as Deputy Attorney General of the United States. In that role, Comey was responsible for supervising operations of the Department of Justice, and he chaired the President’s Corporate Fraud Task Force and the Presidential Board on Safeguarding Americans’ Civil Liberties. In 2004 while serving as acting attorney general, Comey was in the national spotlight when he challenged the White House over constitutional concerns related to domestic wiretapping.
Mueller, the longest serving director of the FBI since J. Edgar Hoover, also has close ties to the nation’s second-oldest institution of higher education. Earlier this month, the FBI director gave William & Mary’s 2013 Commencement address. He also received an honorary doctorate of public service from the university.
In 2011, Mueller’s 10-year term as director of the FBI was ending when President Obama asked that Mueller stay on for two more years.