Press Release

Igor Khrestin joins the Bush Institute as the Bradford M. Freeman Managing Director of Global Policy

DALLAS, TEXAS —The George W. Bush Institute announced today that Igor Khrestin has joined the organization as the Bradford M. Freeman Managing Director of Global Policy. In this role, Khrestin will lead the strategic development of the Bush Institute’s global policy and programming efforts to advance the overall mission, strategy, and impact of the portfolio.  

“Igor Khrestin brings strong expertise on Asia and China in particular, which will strengthen our work in this region,” said David J. Kramer, Executive Director of the Bush Institute.  

Khrestin most recently served as the Managing Director at FGS Global, a leading global public policy firm, where he advised clients on geopolitical trends and risks. Before joining FGS Global, he worked in the Senate for over a decade, including as Senior Adviser to former Senators Cory Gardner and Mark Kirk, and as the Staff Director of the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on East Asia, the Pacific, and International Cybersecurity Policy. Khrestin served as the lead staffer for multiple major legislative initiatives enacted into law. These included the Asia Reassurance Initiative Act of 2018, which authorized $10 billion annually in new funding for U.S. efforts in the Indo‐Pacific region; the North Korea Sanctions and Policy Enhancement Act of 2016; and the Taiwan Allies International Protection and Enhancement Initiative (TAIPEI) Act of 2019.  

Khrestin is a refugee from Ukraine who came to the United States with his family as a teenager. He received a bachelor’s in political science from Illinois Wesleyan University, a certificate in government from the London School of Economics and Political Science, and a master’s from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service.  

“I’m honored and privileged to be joining the George W. Bush Institute and the global policy team,” Khrestin said. “As my family knows firsthand, freedom is a universal right, and the United States must lead the way to securing human freedom around the world. The Bush Institute’s commitment to promoting democracy is critical to this goal. I’m excited to join my new colleagues in this important work.”   

Under his leadership, the Bush Institute’s global policy team will strive to amplify its work to advance free societies, by promoting democratic values globally, enhancing the Institute’s global health initiatives, and championing equal opportunity for women and girls around the world.  

“We are delighted that Igor Khrestin is joining the Bush Institute,” said Ken Hersh, President and CEO of the George W. Bush Presidential Center. “Our Nation and the world are facing a series of challenges, and Igor’s expertise will help the Bush Institute continue to play a leading role in addressing them.” 

Prior to his time on Capitol Hill, Khrestin held positions at the BGR Group and American Enterprise Institute, a public policy think tank where he conducted research on Eurasian affairs and published numerous articles, essays, and opinion pieces. Khrestin was selected as a Defense of Democracies National Security Fellow in 2013 and served as an Associate Scholar at the Center for European Policy Analysis in Washington, DC. 

“Igor’s experience in the private and public sectors and his personal story give him insights into many of the challenges facing the international community. I am excited to see how our global programming will continue to grow with Igor at the helm,” Kramer said.  

Khrestin is fluent in Ukrainian and Russian. He, his wife Theda, and their two young daughters will be moving to Dallas for this role.  


About the George W. Bush Institute 

The George W. Bush Institute is a solution-oriented nonpartisan policy organization focused on ensuring opportunity for all, strengthening democracy, and advancing free societies. Housed within the George W. Bush Presidential Center, the Bush Institute is rooted in compassionate conservative values and committed to creating positive, meaningful, and lasting change at home and abroad. We utilize our unique platform and convening power to advance solutions to national and global issues of the day. Learn more at