Beth Sanner

Former Presidential Intelligence Briefer, Former Deputy Director of National Intelligence
Beth Sanner Speaker
  • Advised multiple U.S. presidents and was among the most influential voices in their decision-making on national intelligence strategy and policy
  • Provided analytic insights and expertise that informed U.S. foreign policy and strategy
  • Briefs audiences on hot-button national and global intelligence matters and their potential to reshape our world
  • Seamlessly blends analytics and visuals to illustrate the issues keeping world leaders up at night

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During her career spanning more than three decades as a leader in the Intelligence Community working in the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI), CIA, U.S. Department of State, and White House, Beth Sanner was a trusted adviser to multiple U.S. presidents, congressional and cabinet officials, and foreign partners on our nation’s most important intelligence and national security matters. As the senior-most analyst for the entire Intelligence Community (IC), she uncovered threats to our country, and, as the Office of the Director of National Intelligence’s director of the President’s Daily Brief and Deputy Director of National Intelligence for Mission Integration, briefed our presidents on their potential impact. Having served in several leadership, staff, policy, and analytic positions in the IC, Sanner was among the most influential voices in presidential decision-making on national and global affairs. Her acumen is highly sought after by our nation’s leaders and organizations across various industries.

Exclusively represented by Leading Authorities, Sanner uniquely immerses audiences in her talks making them feel as though they are our nation’s leaders being briefed on hot-button developments with the potential to reshape our world. Drawing from more than 35 years leading at the highest levels of intelligence, she provides a high-level overview of what’s at play in the current threat landscape, nationally and globally analyzing complex geopolitical factors, proposing the best path toward the most beneficial outcome, and offering her predictions for how events will unfold. She neatly blends key analytics with compelling visual storytelling to share important insights in a way that is easily digestible for audiences.

Regarded as an innovator, change agent, and leadership expert in intelligence circles, she oversaw the elements that coordinate and lead collection, analysis, and program oversight throughout the Intelligence Community (IC) during her two years as the Deputy Director of National Intelligence. Throughout her six-year tenure at the ODNI, a senior-level agency that provides oversight to the Intelligence Community, she also briefed the president and his advisers several times weekly, managed the IC’s most influential analytic enterprises (the President’s Daily Brief and the National Intelligence Council), led the IC’s integration of core mission areas across 18 agencies and tens of thousands of employees, and drove organization-wide initiatives on innovative programs and technology adoption. Before the ODNI, Sanner spent more than a decade as a senior executive in the CIA’s Directorate of Analysis, the branch responsible for the production and distribution of analysis on key foreign issues. In this role, she led analytical components that informed U.S. policy and strategy on South Asia, Russia, and Europe. Previously, she was the U.S. Department of State’s special adviser for Balkan Affairs and a director in the National Security Council’s Russian and European Directorate at the White House, a role in which she briefed Presidents HW Bush and Clinton and their vice presidents and national security advisers and led the coordination of the president’s policy on Russia and Eastern Europe.

Sanner is currently the principal at Insight Consulting, where she adapts her leadership and innovation expertise to provide organizations with tangible strategies for accomplishing their objectives. In addition to Insight Consulting, Sanner is a senior adviser at International Capital Strategies, a senior fellow at Harvard’s Belfer Center, a visiting professor of practice at the University of Maryland’s Applied Research Lab for Intelligence and Security, and a contributing expert to The Cipher BriefShe also appears as a national security contributor on CNN, providing analysis on today’s top intelligence and geopolitical matters.  

Widely recognized for her influence on national intelligence strategy and policy, Sanner is the recipient of the Presidential Rank Award (the highest honor bestowed on civil servants, awarded by President Biden), Distinguished Intelligence Service Medal, Distinguished Career Intelligence Medal, two Superior Intelligence Service Medals, multiple CIA and DNI Director’s Awards, and several other accolades. She is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Sanner earned her B.A. in economics and international affairs from American University and was a Distinguished Graduate of the National War College, earning an M.S. in national security strategy.

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Speaker Video

Beth Sanner - Humanness, Connection, and Integrity in Intelligence

Beth Sanner Breaks Down the Russia-Ukraine Crisis on CNN

Exploring the Nexus Between Intelligence and Emerging National Security Threats. Having spent her career leading and advising at the highest levels of national intelligence, Beth Sanner possesses unparalleled expertise on the issues that threaten our nation’s security. Audiences feel as though they’re inside the room at the center of critical intelligence meetings as she provides a high-level overview of cyber, space, and nuclear threats and emerging and disruptive technologies as the world’s powers navigate the potential for conflict. Telling a compelling story of the powers at play, she effectively breaks down complex geopolitical elements in a way that is easily digestible and shares predictions for how various scenarios may unfold.

Global Intelligence Brief: The Worldwide Implications of Region-Specific Threats. As a trusted presidential intelligence briefer and adviser to government leaders and foreign partners, Beth Sanner’s insights have informed U.S. policy and strategy on China, Russia, Iran, South Asia, North Korea, and various other pivotal regions around the world. She possesses unparalleled expertise on region-specific intelligence matters and shares her sharp, ear-to-the-ground analysis on flashpoint issues, as well as the potential ripple effect these issues may have on the U.S. and its businesses. Sanner expertly tailors her analysis to illustrate how organizations in specific industries may be impacted by global events.

The Change Agent’s Journey: Leading Your Organization’s Next Evolution. As a former national intelligence leader and presidential adviser, Beth Sanner developed a reputation as an impactful change agent in her three decades leading some of the government’s most complex agencies. A battle-tested difference-maker, she measurably improved engagement within her teams while executing on values-based missions and strategies, and she adapts her expertise to help any organization do the same. In this talk, she reveals how leaders can uncover the untapped potential of their people, empower a more diverse and inclusive workforce, spark productivity, and leverage the talents of each individual to create impactful change internally, and beyond their organizations’ traditional domains. Her sought-after insights on facilitating change, and navigating any obstacles encountered along the way, provide leaders with a solid foundation from which to ignite their organization’s next transformation.

Crisis Management: How to Prepare for the Unpreparable. Through three decades of leadership, former ODNI and CIA official Beth Sanner has been tasked with navigating tens of thousands of employees through unimaginable challenges. From the Covid-19 pandemic and 9/11 to political scrutiny on issues ranging from the Afghan war to Russia, Sanner has set the standard for guiding her teams to the other side of a crisis through ethical and forthright leadership. Drawing from her experiences leading through crisis, she shares an evidence-based approach to assessing and analyzing a crisis that leaders can use to determine the best course of action for managing the situation at hand and driving success through challenging times.

Intelligent Innovation for Your Organization. Never one to resist change, Beth Sanner was often at the forefront of advancing technological innovation in her organizations and leading the integration of new systems and processes to advance her team’s capabilities. With a forward-looking approach to the way we get things done, she discusses why innovation is the backbone for advancing your organization and provides a framework for adopting an innovator’s mindset to develop ideas and solutions that align with your mission and power your people to success.

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