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Dr. Adriana Sanford

Chair of the Board of Advisors - Think Tank Research

Specialization:International Corporate Law, International Cybersecurity and Privacy Laws, Trade Law, Banking Law, Anticorruption and Human Rights Law.

Adriana Sanford is a Chilean-American influencer with multiple law degrees, working in top-tier large law firms and with several multinational corporations. She is of counsel with the leading Chilean law firm Puga Ortiz, recently appearing in the 2021 Best Lawyers list. The barrier-breaker belongs to one of the most underrepresented Hispanic minority groups in the United States and comes from the country with the lowest female labor participation in Latin America.

In addition to serving on the advisory board of the International Institute of Management's think tank.  She is also a former member of the board of directors of Amnesty International USA, which is the largest country section of the world's largest grassroots human rights organization. Sanford also served on the advisory committee of the World Economic Forum's Partnering Against Corruption Initiative (PACI), a leading international foundation and business voice on anti-corruption and transparency.  As an American Program Bureau global keynote speaker, she provided the keynote addresses to hundreds of general counsel and senior legal leaders from Fortune 1000 companies at Corporate Counsel's 19th Annual SuperConference in Chicago and to hundreds of Spanish-speaking professionals at ISACA's Latin America Computer Audit Control and Security Conference in Mexico City. 

 Adriana is a thought leader who provides guidance on multi-dimensional legal cases that involve multi-jurisdictional requirements with competing regulators from multiple foreign countries, particular focus is on corporate actions that although legal may violate the spirit of the law, create human rights-related risks, or are considered immoral.

In addition to representing several Fortune 100 corporations, she is a regular international television commentator, and became an award-winning cybersecurity expert that serves as a CNN en Español analyst to 93+ million Spanish-speaking viewers for breaking news related to cybersecurity issues. She is also an in-demand global keynote speaker that “the unique ability to speak to captains of industry, college students, and academicians all in the same audience.” Sanford coauthored two books on global threats that were adopted by the world’s largest institute for supply chain leaders, Institute For Supply Management. Sanford was born in Orange County, California and has lived and worked throughout the United States, Europe, and Latin America.

She is co-author of two business ethics books that provide critical insight for current and aspiring security, business, and supply chain professionals, Business Ethics: A Guide to Surviving Storms, Challenges, and Ethical Risks and tica Empresarial: Una perspectiva global.  Sanford is a Dean's Visiting Scholar with Georgetown University Law Center, a Visiting Research Professor of the Universidad de Talca's School of Business and Economics in Chile, as well as a faculty affiliate of the Center on the Future of War, a DC-based think tank that explores the social, political, economic, and cultural implications of the changing nature of war and conflict.

She is a former clinical associate of management and an honors faculty with the Barrett Honors College, she teaches business law, ethical leadership, ethical issues of managers, and international management to 1, 500 students on an annual basis at the W. P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University. In 2015, Sanford also served as ASU's Lincoln Professor of Global Corporate Compliance and Ethics to 85, 000 students and faculty and as ASU's residential college faculty fellow for the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences. Previously, she served on ASU's advisory board of the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering EPICS Gold program.

Prior to teaching, Sanford had two decades of private sector legal work experience as an international corporate attorney. She served as  primary U.S. counsel to several multinational businesses, including one of the largest international trading companies in the Southern Cone region Argentina, Chile and Uruguay. Her clients included one of Chile's largest fisheries, one of Mexico's largest infrastructure companies, and one of the world's leading security companies. Among her in-house positions, she served as the Assistant General Counsel of a trade finance bank, as well as lead counsel for Latin America and US commercial law counsel for four divisions of a Fortune 50 company.

Academically, Sanford completed six years of law school, receiving a Juris Doctor degree from the Notre Dame Law School and a dual Masters of Law (LL.M.) degree from Georgetown University Law Center in taxation and international and comparative law. She was the first Hispanic woman to obtain Georgetown's dual LL.M. law degree and one of a handful of women to serve as a delegate to the APEC CEO summit in Santiago, Chile.

She studied international and comparative law in the year-long Concannon Program of International Law at the Notre Dame London Law Center in London, England.  Sanford also attended Thunderbird School of Global Management for post-graduate studies in global management. She attended an all-girl's academy in Chile, Villa Maria Academy, and Xavier College Preparatory for young women, before receiving her B.A. in political science from Arizona State University, where she focused on comparative politics.

Sanford is a fourteenth generation Chilean and a direct descendant of one of the oldest families of Cologne, Germany. She is a member of the Overstolz dynasty which was the ancestral family of Cologne patricians. She is fluent in English, Spanish, French, and Portuguese.


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