Steven Emerson is considered one of the leading authorities on Islamic extremist networks, financing and operations as well national security and intelligence. He is the Executive Director of The Investigative Project on Terrorism, a non-profit organization that maintains one of the world's largest storehouses of archival data and intelligence on Islamic and Middle Eastern terrorist groups.
The website of the Investigative Project on Terrorism contains a massive archival data base of documents, dossiers and thousands of original investigations into Islamist terrorism and radical groups.
Emerson and his staff frequently provide briefings to U.S. government and law enforcement agencies, members of Congress and congressional committees, and print and electronic media on terrorist financing and operational networks of Al Qaeda, Hamas, Hezbollah, Islamic Jihad, and the rest of the worldwide Islamic militant spectrum.
Emerson has been interviewed frequently thousands of times on all the major television networks and in the national and international print and electronic media including the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Jerusalem Post, NY Post, Fox News, NBC News, CBS News ABC, Fox News, ABC News, Sinclair Broadcasting, CNBC, MSNBC, Newsday, Los Angeles Times, The Daily Mail, BBC, National Geographic, Der Spiegel, Algemeiner, AP, Reuters, etc.
Emerson launched The Investigative Project on Terrorism in 1995, following the November 1994 broadcast of his documentary film, "Jihad in America," on PBS. The film exposed clandestine operations of militant Islamic terrorist groups on American soil.
For the film, Emerson received numerous awards including the George Polk Award, one of the most prestigious awards in journalism, for Television Documentary in 1994. He also received the Tom Renner Award from the Investigative Reporters and Editors Organization (IRE) for best investigative reporting all categories in 1994. The award from IRE was the fourth he had received from that group. The documentary was also featured on 60 Minutes.
Emerson was an assistant producer on the HBO docu-drama "Path to Paradise" about the 1993 WTC bombing. He was a consulting producer to the TV series "24."
In 2013, he produced a brand new documentary called "Jihad in America: the Grand Deception" (www.granddeception.com) which is an expose of the covert infrastructure and influence of militant Islamic groups like the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas in the US. The film won the following awards:
- Winner - 2013 Myrtle Beach International Film Festival
- Winner - 2013 Beverly Hills Film Festival
- Winner - 2013 Sunset Film Festival Los Angeles
- Winner - 2013 New York City International Film Festival
- Official Selection - 2013 Madrid International Film Festival
- Official Selection - 2013 Chagrin Documentary Film Festival
Emerson is recognized as one of the first terrorism experts to have testified and warned about the threat of Islamic militant networks operating in the United States and their connections worldwide. In a pioneering congressional testimony delivered in 1998, he specifically warned about the threat of Osama Bin Laden's network. Nearly every one of the terrorist suspects and groups first identified in his 1994 film have been indicted, convicted, or deported since 9-11.
Emerson is the author or co-author of six books on terrorism and national security, including:
- "Jihad Incorporated: A Guide to Militant Islam in the U.S." (Prometheus, 2006)
- "American Jihad: The Terrorists Living Among Us" (The Free Press, 2002)
- "Terrorist: The Inside Story of the Highest-Ranking Iraqi Terrorist Ever to Defect to the West" (Villard Books /Random House, 1991)
- "The Fall of Pan Am 103: Inside the Lockerbie Investigation" (Putnam's Sons, 1990)
- "Secret Warriors: Inside the Covert Military Operations of the Reagan Era" (Putnam's Sons, 1988)
- "The American House of Saud: The Secret Petrodollar Connection" (Franklin Watts, 1985)
Prior to his production of Jihad in America, Emerson worked as a special correspondent for CNN for 2 years and previously as a senior editor at US News and World Report for 4 years. Prior to his position at that magazine, he had been a freelancer for the New York Times Magazine and the New Republic. His first job in Washington DC in 1977 was as a staff researcher for the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. He has a BA and MA from Brown University and once ran a marathon in 2 hours, 59 minutes, a feat he was never able to repeat again.