Jeff Nesbit

Jeff Nesbit has held four highly significant jobs with four different U.S. presidents. Currently the Deputy Commissioner for Communications at the Social Security Administration, he was the National Science Foundation’s director of legislative and public affairs in the Bush and Obama administrations, former Vice President Dan Quayle’s communications director at the White House, and the Food and Drug Administration’s public affairs chief under FDA Commissioner Dr. David Kessler, who was later President Biden’s chief scientific officer for COVID-19 response.

Once profiled in The Wall Street Journal as one of the seven people who ended the Tobacco Wars, Nesbit—a former national journalist with Knight Ridder and others—was also the founder and executive director (2011-2022) of Climate Nexus, the New York-based non-profit environmental media organization he launched after leaving the NSF in 2011. Climate Nexus is funded entirely by foundations, with a staff that includes former national journalists from the Associated Press, CBS News, and other national media organizations and senior communications professionals from leading environmental groups.

Nesbit also managed a successful strategic communications company for more than a decade with national clients and projects that included the Discovery Channel networks, Yale University, the American Heart Association, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and the American Red Cross. This company helped create and launch three unique television networks for Discovery Communications, Encyclopedia Britannica, and Lockheed Martin. It developed programming and a new cable TV network concept for The Britannica Channel; global programming partnerships for the successful launch of the Discovery Health Channel, including a novel CME programming initiative and the Medical Honors live broadcast from Constitution Hall; and programming strategies for the creation of the first-ever IPTV network developed by Lockheed Martin.

While at the NSF, Nesbit was the co-creator of the Science of the Olympic Winter Games and the Science of NFL Football video series with NBC Learn and NBC Sports, which won the 2010 Sports Emmy for best original sports programming, as well as The Science of Speed, a novel video series partnership with the NASCAR Media Group.

Nesbit wrote a popular weekly science column, “At the Edge,” for U.S News & World Report from 2012-2018. He also contributed regularly to The New York Times, Time magazine, and Axios.

He is the author of the critically acclaimed Poison Tea (St. Martin’s Press/Macmillan, 2016) and This Is the Way the World Ends (St. Martin’s Press/Macmillan, 2018). Nesbit has written more than 30 commercially successful novels for a wide range of publishing houses, including the blockbusters PeaceOil, and Jude.