Former US ambassador to the European Union Anthony Gardner is joining law firm Sidley Austin as a senior counsel.

Gardner will be a member of both the international trade and the privacy and cybersecurity practices. He will be based out of both London and Brussels.

Gardner has 27 years of experience within US-European affairs as a government official and lawyer. During his diplomatic assignment he worked on negotiations on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), the privacy shield agreement facilitating the transatlantic transfer of personal data by companies based in Europe, and the umbrella agreement facilitating the transatlantic transfer of data between law enforcement authorities.

He has also worked in co-ordinating US-EU sanctions against Russia following its annexation of Crimea and the facilitation of US participation in EU-funded research programmes.

Prior to his role as ambassador, Gardner served as managing director of a London-based private equity firm. He also served as director for European affairs on the US National Security Council, where he was responsible for US relations with the EU.

Commenting on the new appointment, George Petrow, Sidley’s managing partner for the European region says: “Tony’s arrival, fresh from his Brussels post and with his singularly informed view of the trade and regulatory issues that exist between the US and Europe, could not have come at a better time for Sidley and our clients.”

Commenting on his new role Gardner says: “I am eager to continue my involvement in US-EU relations, particularly in trade, competition and regulatory issues, especially relating to the digital economy and data privacy. I was drawn to Sidley because many of its partners are deeply involved in these issues, and I have had long-standing relationships with several of them. The breadth of the firm’s global reach and extensive resources make it a natural fit.”