A strategic leader providing keen insight into technology risks and solutions, Michael Adams has spent an extraordinary career combatting the world’s most difficult problems. For more than 25 years, he served as a national security advisor to the U.S. Navy, where he was a point person on cyber threats, emerging technologies, terrorism, and other critical national security issues. He later joined the international law firm McGuireWoods where, as a partner, he transformed the firm’s approach to cybersecurity and privacy.
Currently, Adams provides strategic advice and cultivates business for Palantir Technologies as the company develops unique data integration software and the solutions for corporate and government clients.
In his career, Adams has routinely addressed cybersecurity and privacy legal obligations set forth in Federal and state laws, regulations and technical standards.
Adams previously served as Deputy General Counsel to the last two Chairmen of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, where he counseled the country’s top military officers, civilian advisors, the National Security Council and Congress on international and national security law affecting operations. He developed frameworks to combat cyber threats and was a key adviser during significant cyber events, including North Korea’s hacking of Sony Pictures. In other assignments, he helped design a cyber architecture for forces in the Pacific theater; advised on the development, procurement and use of sensitive technology; and developed groundbreaking analysis that enabled the multimillion-dollar procurement of leading tools for counter-terrorism missions. Adams was deputy general counsel for U.S. Pacific Command and NATO’s ISAF Joint Command, as well as general counsel for Naval Special Warfare Development Group and special operations task forces conducting national missions.
Adams graduated with a B.S. from the United States Naval Academy and earned a J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center and a L.L.M. from Harvard Law School. He was recognized as a “Trailblazer” by the National Law Journal and a “Leading Lawyer” for cyber law by Legal 500. He also co-taught a national security law course at Harvard Law School and has lectured at Oxford, Columbia, Duke, Georgetown, the University of Virginia, New York University, the University of North Carolina, and the University of California, Berkeley Law Schools. He also served as the U.S. government’s primary representative, negotiator or speaker on law and operations for events in numerous countries worldwide.