Lina Khan is an American attorney and professor at Yale Law School. She is best known for her research on tech monopolies and antitrust law, and as the fifth commissioner of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Her confirmation by the U.S. Senate on April 14th, 2021 has been met with praise from consumer advocates who believe she will help take a more progressive approach to protecting Americans’ privacy rights in an age of expanding digital footprints.

Khan brings a wealth of expertise to the FTC from both public service and academia — she was previously Special Counsel for Technology & Innovation in the Office of Legal Policy at the Department of Justice, served as Deputy Director for Competition Policy & Advocacy at Public Knowledge, and testified before Congress multiple times on topics such as competition policy and protecting consumer data privacy.

Early Life and Education

Lina Khan is an associate professor at Yale Law School and a leading antitrust and competition regulation scholar. She is an alum of Columbia Law School, graduating magna cum laude in 2012.

Khan previously held positions at the Open Markets Institute, the Center for Democracy & Technology, and the Federal Trade Commission. Her impressive career is partly due to a strong academic background and a passion for progressive law.


Lina Khan was born in New York City in 1988 to first-generation immigrant parents from the Indian subcontinent. Khan’s parents were successful entrepreneurs who worked hard to ensure their four children had a good education. As a young girl, Khan excelled at school, taking rigorous honors classes and scoring considerably higher on standardized tests than her peers.

Khan attended Yale University, graduating in 2010 summa cum laude with a degree in political science and philosophy. While at Yale, she was awarded the Phi Beta Kappa Award for exceptional academic achievement and the International Women’s Political Science Prize for her work on economic inequality and democratic theory.

After college, Khan enrolled in Harvard Law School, receiving her J.D in 2014 and earning honors for her work on public regulatory issues. During her time at Harvard, she also founded the Organization for Taxpayer Protection (OTPP) which remained active into 2018 advocating for consumer rights and protections from corporate monopolies and abusive business practices.


Lina Khan is a legal scholar and advocate. She received her B.A. with honors in political science, philosophy, and economics at Yale University in 2011 and earned a J.D.; the same year she received the Yale Law Journal Prize Scholarship based on academic achievement, research contributions to the journal and other activities. Khan also holds an LL.M from Harvard Law School and is currently a doctoral candidate in law at Oxford University, where she has published two articles as part of her research on competition policy in digital markets.

Khan has held several public service positions through both school-sponsored as well as non-profit programs focused on consumer advocacy issues, including Summer Institute for Regulatory Policy Studies Fellow for the Center for Market Processes at George Mason University’s Mercatus Center; Economic Advocate Intern at Public Citizen, Inc.; Pro Bono Attorney with Community Legal Services; 2017 Visiting Fellow with NYU Law’s Information Law Institute; and 2017-18 Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Fellow under then Associate Director Seamless Jena Passut.

Additionally, Khan was awarded fellowships from the Federal Trade Commission Bureau of Competition (2017-2018) and the Stanford Center for Internet & Society (2009–2011).


Lina Khan is a progressive advocate, academic and current FTC Commissioner. She has worked as a legal scholar and founded the Open Markets Institute, a think tank focusing on monopolistic power.

Lina Khan was nominated to serve on the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) by President Joe Biden in March 2021 and was later confirmed by the Senate on June 15, 2021. Her confirmation brings the FTC to its full potential, allowing it to advance its progressive agenda.

Let’s look into Lina Khan’s career in more detail.

Early Career

Lina Khan, who has served as a legal scholar and activist for the past decade, was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on December 4, 2020 to join the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). She will begin her term in February 2021, returning the body to its full five commissioners.

Khan’s career began as a student of law at Yale Law School. In 2011 she co-authored an article titled “Amazon’s Antitrust Paradox,” which gained attention when it was endorsed by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT). Following this success, Khan became an expert adviser on technology and competition policy to Sanders’ 2016 Presidential campaign.

After graduating from Yale in 2012, she served as an antitrust lawyer at the FTC before becoming a Fellow at the Open Markets Institute in Washington DC in 2015. In 2017 she joined Columbia Law School as an Assistant Professor of Law, focusing mainly on antitrust regulations and emerging digital economies. Throughout her academic career Lina Khan has advocated for stronger enforcement against dominant corporations and tougher rules preventing anticompetitive behavior.

FTC Commissioner

On April 15th, 2021, the U.S. Senate finally confirmed Lina Khan as the fifth Federal Trade Commission commissioner (FTC) commissioner. Khan is an academic and activist who has been a vocal advocate for tougher antitrust enforcement in the United States. Her confirmation marks a major milestone for FTC Chairman Joseph Simons, who can now move forward with his progressive regulations and consumer protections agenda.

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Khan comes to the FTC from the Yale School of Law, where she was a professor of antitrust law and policy. She is best known for her work on Amazon’s predatory practices, which she documented in her 2017 paper “Amazon’s Antitrust Paradox” that catapulted her from obscurity to media fame.

At just 36 years old, Khan is one of the youngest commissioners ever confirmed by a vote in the Senate. Still, her youth belies considerable experience studying consumer protection and competition regulation issues at top universities like Columbia Law School and Georgetown University Law Center. As an academic, Khan has consistently pushed for stronger enforcement against big tech giants like Google and Facebook—pushing back against their overwhelming market power and helping to bring them under greater federal scrutiny.

The reality that Lina Khan is now in office as an FTC Commissioner adds real weight to enforce policies regarding Big Tech companies moving forward — posing an interesting challenge … but one that could profoundly affect how Americans are protected from potentially harmful technology products or services going forward. With Lina at its helm, we can be sure that the FTC will continue to use its powers cautiously–but effectively–to secure consumers’ rights across industries nationwide–from food production standards to social media platforms’ algorithms impacting electoral outcomes during election cycles.

Other Positions

In addition to her current post as Commissioner of the Federal Trade Commission, Lina Khan holds several other public service positions. Her role as the Director of Amazon Accountability at the Open Markets Institute is most notable. At the institute, she ensures that large tech platforms are held accountable for their market dominance. She is also a Nonresident Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution, where she researches regional inequality and state capacity.

Khan chairs the American Bar Association Section of Antitrust Law’s Antitrust in High Technology Industries Committee and co-chair its Academic Relations Committee. She has also served on a Working Group on Contemporary Antitrust Issues for The Federalist Society and presided as co-chair for its 2019 Panel on Consumer Welfare in Cybersecurity. Her work focuses on contemporary issues surrounding corporate antitrust law and monopolization, intellectual property rights, consumer welfare protection and privacy regulation.

Khan’s research has been cited by lawmakers, scholars and academics worldwide, making her a force to be reckoned with regarding regulatory issues in consumer protection regulation.


Lina Khan has made many accomplishments throughout her career, specifically as the fifth Federal Trade Commission (FTC) commissioner. She is credited with leading the FTC’s efforts to tackle anti-competitive mergers and consumer harm. As the fifth and final FTC commissioner, her confirmation by the Senate marks a major milestone in the agency’s history, allowing the FTC to continue its progressive agenda.

Let’s take a look at some of Lina Khan’s accomplishments.

Antitrust Law

Lina Khan is a prominent legal scholar and advocate for progressive antitrust law. She has been part of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) since February, 2020. She can now move forward with her progressive agenda due to the Senate’s confirmation of a fifth commissioner.

Khan focuses on problematic relationships between corporations and technology, which have been increasingly destructive to smaller businesses, independent producers, and consumer choice. She believes that sustained intervention from regulators is required to ensure that competition remains open and genuine.

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Khan’s research covers antitrust law, technology regulation, and the regulation of liberty in the digital sphere. She argues in favor of maintaining an environment where competition exists, consumer protection is enhanced and companies operate within limits set by existing laws. Khan has written extensively on how current trends like platform consolidation can create regulatory entrenchment as tech giants muscle out competitors and gain unprecedented influence over consumer markets.

She also sees her vision as having broader implications for democracy since democracies must be built on competitive markets that respect freedom of expression. With the confirmation of a new commissioner to the FTC, Lina Khan will be able to continue pushing forward her progressive agenda for more competitive markets with strong consumer protections in place.

Amazon Monopoly

Lina Khan has been an influential voice in the debate over Big Tech and the potential for monopoly power. Khan gained prominence as a law professor at Yale, where she published widely on competition law and spoke out against Amazon’s practices of using low prices to drive out smaller competitors. She also drafted a staff report for the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) outlining potential violations of antitrust laws by Amazon. The FTC report was released in 2019 and caught media attention leading to her appointment to the FTC.

Khan’s appointment was confirmed this week by the US Senate, which removes a major hurdle for the FTC’s agenda under new leadership from president Biden’s administration. One of their main projects is an ongoing investigation into whether Amazon has used its market power improperly, after Khan drafted a staff report that outlines how the company may have violated antitrust laws such as forcing merchants to use only Amazon services, or engaging in price squeezing.

As one of five commissioners at the agency, Khan will play an important role in aggressive enforcement actions against large tech companies like Amazon, who have come under greater scrutiny for domestic and international monopolistic practices.

Lina Khan’s FTC can finally move forward with its progressive agenda after Senate confirms fifth commissioner

On March 23rd, 2021, the Senate confirmed Lina Khan to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). She was nominated by President Joe Biden and confirmed with a 55-44 vote, making her the fifth commissioner of the FTC. Before her confirmation, Khan served as a commissioner of the antitrust subcommittee of the House Judiciary Committee and was a widely accepted progressive leader within the antitrust community.

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Khan’s confirmation is significant for many reasons. For years, progressivism at the FTC had been largely limited due to lack of its commissioners. In addition, division between Republican and Democratic members stalled policymaking as commission decisions required an even number of votes from both sides. FTC majority decisions could be held hostage over disagreements between its members. With Khan’s confirmation, however,the commission now includes an equal number of Democrats and Republicans and can finally move forward with its progressive agenda.


The confirmation of Lina Khan to the Federal Trade Commission by the US Senate marks a turning point for the FTC and its progressive agenda. Chosen for her unique skill set, Khan has spent her career developing expertise in competition, antitrust law, and consumer privacy. One of Congress’s youngest commissioners, Khan has made it known that she will use her position to push for tougher antitrust regulations. She has already proposed creating new tools to ensure that Big Tech companies are held accountable if they use their size and influence to squelch competition or take advantage of consumers.

With a majority shift in the FTC leaning toward progressive ideals, they hope to finally move forward with far-reaching antitrust investigations and enforcement actions. Thanks to Lina Khan, the watchdogs may now be able to keep better tabs on our tech giants.

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