Cyrus Amir-Mokri is one of the original trustees and board members of PAAIA. He was born in Tehran and moved permanently to the United States in 1981. In his professional career, he has both served in government and practiced law in the private sector.
Most recently, Mr. Amir-Mokri was a senior legal and policy advisor to the Chairman of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. He participated in the legislative process that led to the passage of the Dodd-Frank Act and the subsequent implementation through rulemaking. He also served as the agency’s deputy representative to the Financial Stability Oversight Council and as liaison for inter-agency affairs. Mr. Amir-Mokri’s previous experience in government was to serve as law clerk to the Honorable Bruce M. Selya of the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit.
Before serving in government, Mr. Amir-Mokri was a partner at the law firm of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, resident in its New York office. He concentrated in complex commercial litigation. He participated in many of the firm’s high-profile litigation matters.
Mr. Amir-Mokri earned his law degree from the University of Chicago Law School. Before his legal career, Mr. Amir-Mokri had diverse educational experiences. He was graduated from Harvard College in 1986 with a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry. While in college, he served as co-editor-in-chief of the Harvard International Review. After graduating from college, Mr. Amir-Mokri studied history at the University of Chicago, where he concentrated in the fields of modern and medieval Islamic history, diplomatic history (particularly that of the United States), and Islamic thought, and wrote his dissertation on the ideology and long-term legacy of Iran’s constitutional revolution.
Mr. Amir-Mokri has devoted substantial time to community service and pro bono matters. He has represented inmates on death row, prisoners with civil rights claims and political asylum applicants. He has also been active in matters affecting the Iranian-American community. A two-term director and supporter of the Iranian-American Bar Association, he played a central role in supervising preparation of position papers on recent United States immigration policy and an independent report on the implementation of certain of those policies. Mr. Amir-Mokri is also a founding member and supporter of the Iranian-American Political Action Committee, which is devoted to encouraging Iranian-Americans to participate in the civic and political life of the United States.
Mr. Amir-Mokri has a lifelong passion for classical music and soccer.