Thomas Lippman has long been an influential voice on American foreign policy, particularly when it comes to Middle East issues and US-Saudi Arabia relations. A former Washington Post bureau chief and national security correspondent, Lippman is the author of seven books on the region including Understanding Islam and Arabia on the Edge: The Uncertain Future of an American Ally.
Early Life and Education
Lippman was raised in New York City. He attended Regis High School and Columbia University, eventually earning a degree in English literature. He held positions as reporter and foreign correspondent for over three decades with The Washington Post, serving as Saigon bureau chief during the Vietnam War, as well as Middle East bureau chief. He has written articles, books and op-ed columns on political and foreign policy matters for numerous publications including magazines, books and op-ed columns as well as lectures delivered at universities and training institutes including Air Force Special Operations School, National Defense University and Brookings Institution relating to Gulf regional affairs. He has lectured about these affairs for U.S. Air Force Special Operations School, National Defense University as well as State Department’s Foreign Service Institute & Brookings Institution; additionally he provided consulting for film producers & corporations doing business in this region & was Edward R Murrow Fellow with Council on Foreign Relations.
He has extensive journalism experience, publishing magazine articles and book reviews as well as writing op-eds for The Washington Post as both Middle East bureau chief and national security correspondent. Additionally, he is a senior fellow of the Council on Foreign Relations as well as an adjunct scholar of Middle East Institute in Washington.
Lippman has made numerous television and radio appearances, such as those broadcast by NPR, CNN, MSNBC, the BBC and Fox News; several of his lectures about Saudi Arabia have even been broadcast live. Furthermore, he frequently lectures about Gulf regional affairs at National Defense University and Brookings Institution.
His research interests lie primarily in shallow water physical oceanography and large scale coastal evolution with a particular emphasis on how human and natural forces interact. He has participated in 14 nearshore field experiments as well as conducted studies in inner continental shelf, surf zone and inlet environments.
Achievement and Honors
Lippman’s appointment as Chief Justice marked an historical landmark. For the first time in its storied history, it would be led by someone who had spent their career working his way up through its ranks – someone familiar with all its key personnel and operations, numerous facilities and budget, unique rules and practices of its fourteen trial and appellate courts, etc.
He presented a vision of the judiciary as an institution with creative powers, charged with solving society’s most pressing problems while upholding and expanding access to justice for all.
He received several accolades, such as the Ernestine Sapp Justice Award from Thomas Goode Jones Law School and the Judge Jane M. Bolin Service Award from Yale BLSA.
Thomas Lippman is a journalist and author who specializes in American foreign policy and Middle Eastern affairs, particularly relations between Saudi Arabia and the U.S. As an expert on Saudi Arabia-US ties, Thomas frequently appears on television and radio news programs as a guest analyst and has lectured at National Defense University and Brookings Institution on Gulf regional affairs.
He has traveled widely through Islamic regions and his book Understanding Islam provides a broad yet concise introduction to Muslim beliefs and practices. Rather than pushing one interpretation over the other, this text encourages readers to continue their studies of this widely misunderstood religion.
Lippman unfortunately pays only minimal attention to the rise of Al Qaeda and the development of an underclass in Saudi Arabia; both developments signaling that our relationship with the House of Saud was already tense long before 9/11.
Lippman has worked tirelessly towards his goals, amassing an astounding net worth of $2 Million.
At the time he took charge of New York’s highest court, court system was still adapting to post-Columbine realities of increased security and reduced resources. Faced with budget restrictions, he attempted to maintain essential court operations as well as implement numerous initiatives begun during his previous stint as chief administrator.
He transformed the Court’s law department, cutting back its backlog of cases. Additionally, he altered procedures for drafting decisions so chambers staff could focus more on legal analysis; and instituted case conferencing, internal televised hearings, email communication and other modern technologies as a means of increasing efficiency and increasing justice delivery. Finally, he also provided pragmatic progressivism voiced from an exceptional bench of the Court.