Steering Committee

The Program is directed by the Steering Committee, whose focus is on strategic program objectives and confirming the selection of program candidates.

Mortimer Zuckerman with Eric and James Gertler

Steering Committee Members

Mortimer B. Zuckerman (сenter)
Trustee, Zuckerman Institute

Eric J. Gertler (right)
Trustee, Zuckerman Institute

James S. Gertler (left)
Trustee, Zuckerman Institute

David Z. Robinson (not pictured)



Eric J. Gertler

Eric Gertler has held leadership roles in both the private and public sectors. Gertler currently serves as Executive Chairman of U.S.News & World Report (“U.S.News”), the leading news authority on rankings and expert guidance on life decisions, where he has overall responsibility for both the editorial and business operations of this multifaceted digital media company that reaches almost 500 million people annually. He also oversees Ulysses Ventures, a multi-strategy investment fund based in New York City.

In August 2019, Gertler was nominated to serve as Acting Commissioner / President & CEO-designate of Empire State Development (ESD), New York State’s principal economic development agency, a position he held through July 2021. He had previously been confirmed in June 2018 by the New York Senate to serve on the ESD board. Gertler’s tenure was characterized by four main priorities: 1) meeting the unprecedented economic needs of New York State arising from the Covid-19 pandemic; 2) completing critical infrastructure projects throughout the state (including Moynihan Train Hall); 3) attracting companies to the state and expanding job growth; and 4) implementing economic initiatives with long term benefits for the state (including the largest small business assistance program in the state’s history). A passionate New Yorker, he continues to be a member of the ESD board.

Gertler had an earlier stint in government from 2013 to 2015 as Executive Vice President of the New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) and as Managing Director of the Center for Economic Transformation under multiple mayoral administrations. He was responsible for spurring economic development by managing more than 100 initiatives and directing hundreds of millions of dollars into the New York City economy.

In addition to his public sector roles, Gertler has held leadership roles at the intersection of technology, data and media sectors. While overseeing U.S.News as Executive Chairman, he also served as Co-Chairman and Co-Publisher of the New York Daily News and engineered its 2017 sale to the Tribune Company. He also led a number of cutting-edge technology companies as CEO in the early 2000s and served concurrently in the late 1990s as President of the three media properties U.S.News, Fast Company and The Atlantic. He began his career as a corporate and communications attorney with Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom.

He serves as a trustee to the Zuckerman Family Office, Zuckerman Institute and Zuckerman Family Foundation and is a board member of Columbia University’s Zuckerman Mind Brain and Behavior Institute. He is a member of the Board of Governors for Technion-Israel Institute of Technology as well as Tel Aviv University and the Weizmann Institute of Science. He is also the Chairman of the American-Israel Friendship League. He is a current member of Young President’s Organization (“YPO”).

He is the author of the critically acclaimed book Prying Eyes: Protect Your Privacy From People Who Sell To You, Snoop on You or Steal From You (Random House), which predicted the crisis of security around personal data.

A graduate of Brown University, Gertler holds degrees from the Sorbonne at the University of Paris, the Institut D’Etudes Politiques in Paris, with honors, and a law degree, with honors, from American University, where he served as Editor-in-Chief of the Law Review and was inducted into the National Leadership Honor Society Omicron Delta Kappa.

James S. Gertler

Mr. James S. Gertler is President and CEO of Drew Lane Capital, LLC, a private investment firm based in New York City; Vice Chairman and Senior Managing Director of Legacy Partners, Inc. a private investment firm focused on Greater China; and Trustee and Advisor to the Mortimer Zuckerman Family Office, Institute and Foundation.

He is a board director of the Mortimer B. Zuckerman Mind Brain Behavior Institute at Columbia University, a board director of the Center for Public Leadership at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, a Member and Trustee of New York-Presbyterian Hospital, a member of the Leadership Council of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, a governor of the International Board of Governors of Tel Aviv University, Technion – Israel Institute of Technology and Weizmann Institute of Science, on the National Leadership Council of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, and a board director of the America-Israel Friendship League.

Mr. Gertler is a graduate of the Harvard Business School, receiving a Master in Business Administration in 1992.  He received a Bachelor in Science in Economics degree, magna cum laude, from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania in 1988. He is married to a writer and has two daughters.