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Ivan Selin Edit Profile

businessman , Chairman , Secretary of State

Ivan Selin, American Entrepreneur. Decorated Distinguished Civilian Svc. medal, 1970; recipient Distinguished Svc.medal Secretary of State, 1991; Fulbright scholar, 1959-1961; Ford Foundation grantee, 1952-1954.


Selin, Ivan was born on March 11, 1937 in New York City. Son of Saul and Freda (Kuhlman) Selin.


Bachelor of Engineering, Yale University, 1957. Master of Engineering, Yale University, 1958. Doctor of Philosophy, Yale University, 1960.

Doctor of Science, University Paris, 1962.


From 1960 to 1965, Selin was a research engineer at the RAND Corporation, working on national security issues and statistical communication theory. In 1965, Selin went to work for the Office of the Secretary of Defense, one of Robert S. McNamara's Whiz Kids. From 1965 to 1970, Selin worked for McNamara, becoming Acting Assistant Secretary of Defense for Systems Analysis by the end of that period.

While serving in this capacity, Selin represented the Office of the Secretary of Defense at the commissioning of the USS Knox (FF-1052). In 1970, Selin and several DOD colleagues co-founded American Management Systems, a technology and management consulting firm. Selin served as Chief Executive Officer from the company's founding to the late 1980s.

Selin was Under Secretary of State for Management from May 23, 1989 to June 30, 1991. He received the Secretary of State's Distinguished Service Award in 1991. On July 1, 1991, Selin became Chairman of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, serving in that capacity until he resigned on June 30, 1995.

Selin was sworn in by outgoing NRC Chairman Kenneth Monroe Carr and also had a ceremonial swearing-in ceremony at which Vice President Dan Quayle presided and Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor administered the oath. Selin was Founding Chairman of the Board of the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of American History.


  • He received the Department of Defense Distinguished Civilian Service Medal in 1970. For his government service, he received the Pentagon’s Distinguished Civilian Service medal in 1970 and, from the Secretary of State, the Distinguished Service Medal in 1991.


President Corporation Against Drug Abuse, 1988-1995. Board directors, governor United Nations Association United States, 1979-1989. Executive committee Greater Washington Research Center, Federal City Council.

Trustee Asia Society, 1996-1998. Chairman, board directors Smithsonian National Museum of America History, since 1996, Yale University Council, since 2000. Member Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (editor transactions on Information Theory 1960-1965), Council Foreign Relations, Yale Club, Sigma Xi, Tau Beta Pi.


Married Nina Kallet, June 8, 1957. Children: Douglas, Jessica.

Saul Selin

Freda (Kuhlman) Selin

Nina Kallet

Douglas Selin

Jessica Selin