ADL Honors FBI Assistant Director Michael Steinbach for His “Career on the Front Lines in the Fight Against Terrorism”

Washington, DC, May 5, 2015 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today honored Michael Steinbach, Assistant Director of the FBI’s Counter-Terrorism Division, with the ADL William and Naomi Gorowitz Institute Service Award in recognition of his “career on the front lines in the fight against terrorism and extremism.”

The award given to Mr. Steinbach was presented by Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director on May 5 during ADL’s National Leadership Summit in Washington, D.C., a gathering of hundreds of the League’s leaders and activists from across the country. The award recognizes outstanding achievements in the fight against terrorism, extremism and injustice.

“From his experiences on the front lines overseas to serving in various domestic capacities in the fight against terrorism and extremism, Mr. Steinbach represents the true essence of what this award is all about, as he bears the burden of protecting our country from attacks,” Mr. Foxman said. “We honor him for his extraordinary efforts over the years to keep us safe. He has had a distinguished and illustrious career, and his day-to-day work both support and reflect our mission, goals and values.”

In accepting the award, Mr. Steinbach reflected on the meaning of receiving an honor from ADL, and applauded the League’s century of efforts on “building a better world” in the fight against bigotry, hate, and discrimination.

“That’s what this award embodies to me,” Mr. Steinbach said. “I want to thank ADL for maintaining true to its mission to build a better world, and for continuing its unflappable support for the FBI and the challenges for today as well as for the future.”

As FBI Legal Attaché in Israel, Mr. Steinbach regularly hosted ADL seminars with American Chiefs of Police. In addition, he has briefed ADL’s Advanced Training School course on Extremist and Terrorist Threats and the threat of ISIS from the FBI’s perspective, and participated in Law Enforcement and Society: Lessons of the Holocaust, a law enforcement training run by ADL in partnership with the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.


Mr. Steinbach joined the FBI in April 1995 and was assigned to the Chicago Division.  In 2003, he was promoted to Supervisor in the Counterterrorism Division at FBI Headquarters, where he provided program management for FBI operations at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and Afghanistan. In 2004, he was deployed to Afghanistan and served as the deputy on-scene commander for FBI operations. Following this role, he served as the FBI Legal Attaché in Israel from 2005 to 2008, where he worked with the Government of Israel and the Palestinian Authority on all FBI investigative matters.

He was subsequently named deputy director for Law Enforcement Services at the CIA's Counterterrorism Center in 2010, and was later appointed Special Assistant to the Associate Deputy Director at FBI Headquarters.  In 2012, he served as Special Agent in Charge of the Jacksonville Division, and in 2013, he became Special Agent in Charge of the Miami Division. 

The ADL William and Naomi Gorowitz Institute on Terrorism and Extremism advances the fight against terrorism through education and advocacy by providing timely information, cutting-edge training and educational opportunities to the law enforcement community.  The Institute assists law enforcement by providing resources for tracking extremists and terrorists across the United States.

The award given to Mr. Steinbach was created by Alan Gerry, an honorary national commissioner, who created the institute to honor the memory of his late parents.

Past recipients of the award have included: Washington, D.C. Metropolitan Police Department Chief of Police Cathy L. Lanier, former Director of Central Intelligence and former Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta; former U.S. Homeland Security Directors Michael Chertoff and Janet Napolitano; former CIA Director George Tenet, former FBI Director Louis Freeh, and former New York Police Commissioner Ray Kelly.

ADL is the world’s leading anti-hate organization. Founded in 1913 in response to an escalating climate of anti-Semitism and bigotry, its timeless mission is to protect the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment for all. Today, ADL continues to fight all forms of hate with the same vigor and passion. A global leader in exposing extremism, delivering anti-bias education, and fighting hate online, ADL is the first call when acts of anti-Semitism occur. ADL’s ultimate goal is a world in which no group or individual suffers from bias, discrimination or hate.

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