Rufus Hawkins Yerxa (born 1951) is an American lawyer and public servant. He is President of the National Foreign Trade Council.

He served as visiting professor at the Monterey Institute of International Studies and leading authority on international trade agreements and U.S. trade policy. From 2002-13 he was the Deputy Director General of the World Trade Organization (WTO).[1]


Yerxa holds degrees from


From 1977-81 he was legal advisor to the chairman of the International Trade Commission. From 1981-89 he was assistant chief counsel of the House Ways and Means Committee and staff director of its Subcommittee on Trade.

He was U.S. ambassador to the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) in Geneva,[when?] and then deputy United States Trade Representative in Washington, D.C.[when?] He played a key role in the Uruguay Round Negotiations.[2] After leaving government service In the mid-1990s, he was a resident partner in the Brussels office of Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer & Feld, where his practice focused on international trade and European regulatory matters. He was European general counsel, and later chief international counsel, for Monsanto Company.[1] He is a member of the District of Columbia Bar.

On March 9, 2016, the National Foreign Trade Council (NFTC)'s Board of Directors announced Yerxa would serve as the organization's new president effective May 9, 2016, succeeding Bill Reinsch.[3]


  1. ^ a b "The Deputy Directors-General". World Trade Organization. Retrieved 2008-08-10. 
  2. ^ "BIOGRAPHY OF RUFUS H. YERXA" (PDF). S3.amazonaws.com. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2016-09-11. Retrieved 2017-05-06. 
  3. ^ "Home". Nftc.org. Retrieved 2017-05-06. 

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