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Michael Sessums

Public Affairs & International Relations

Michael is a 25-year global public affairs strategist and public policy expert. His specialty is managing issues at the intersection of public affairs, government, reputation and crisis communications.


Before joining Summit, he was the Managing Director in Burson-Marsteller’s Public Affairs & Crisis practice, leading the practice’s international team. Prior to that, he had  a 17-year career as a diplomat, capped by assignments at the White House as the National Security Council Director for the European Union and European economic issues and as the Senior Ukraine Advisor in the State Department. Michael also served at U.S. embassies in Warsaw and Vilnius, the U.S. Consulate General in Cape Town, and in various assignments at the State Department in Washington. He began his career on the legislative staff of U.S. Senator Bob Graham (D-FL) in the early 1990’s and worked on President Clinton’s reelection campaign in 1996.


Throughout his career, Michael has managed and communicated around complex issues at the heart of U.S. national security and domestic politics, including data and cyber security, global supply chains and responsible sourcing, bilateral U.S. relations with foreign governments, the global economy, U.S. investments abroad, global energy markets, and many others. His expertise today is built on his deep understanding of how Washington works, and of how U.S. and global policy makers and influencers consume and communicate information.


Michael studied political science and the German language at Emory University (1988-1991); U.S. foreign policy and international economics at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (1995-1997); and national security and resourcing strategy at the National Defense University (2014). 

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