James D. Wolfensohn is chairman of Wolfensohn & Company, LLC. He was president of the World Bank Group from 1995 to 2005 and thereafter served for one year as special envoy for Gaza disengagement for the Middle East Quartet, consisting of the United Nations, the European Union, the United States and Russia.
Immediately prior to and again after his work in public service, Mr. Wolfensohn had a long and successful career in his own investment and advisory firm, as well as leadership positions at financial firms in Sydney, London and New York, including as Group Chief Executive of Schroders Ltd. in London. He was a member of the Executive Committee of Salomon Brothers for five years.
He is chairman emeritus of the Boards of Trustees of Carnegie Hall and the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton, both organizations with which he worked for decades. He is also chairman emeritus of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. He retired recently as chairman of the Citigroup International Advisory Board and he has been a member and officer of many other commercial and eleemosynary boards including the Rockefeller Foundation, the Carnegie Foundation, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and the International Federation of Multiple Sclerosis.
Mr. Wolfensohn is a member of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences as well as a Member of the American Philosophical Society.
He is the recipient of many national and international medals and awards in recognition of his public service and his support for the arts. These include a knighthood of the Order of the British Empire (KBE), the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Rising Sun of Japan, the Commander's Cross of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany and the award of Officer of the Order of Australia (AO).
He holds a BA and LL.B from the University of Sydney and an MBA from the Harvard Graduate School of Business. He was an officer in the Royal Australian Air Force and a member of the 1956 Australian Olympic Team.
He and his wife, Elaine, have three married children: Sara, Naomi, and Adam.