Clay Diamond has been Executive Director-General Counsel for the American Pilots’ Association (APA) since 2021. Prior to that, he served 13 years as APA’s Deputy Director-Associate General Counsell. A 1989 graduate of the U.S Coast Guard Academy, he also earned a Master’s Degree from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and a Juris Doctor from Case Western Reserve University. He represents pilots and the piloting profession before Congress, State legislatures, federal and State agencies, and local oversight bodies. He also advises pilot groups and pilotage authorities on operations, practices and pilotage oversight. He regularly serves on U.S. Delegations to the International Maritime Organization and is an adjunct instructor at the Maritme Institute for Training and Graduate Studies, California Maritime Academy, and the Maritime Pilot Institute. In 2012, Mr. Diamond was appointed by the Secretary of Homeland Security to serve on the Navigation Safety Advisory Council.
During his 20-year Coast Guard career, Mr. Diamond served aboard four Coast Guard cutters, including as commanding officer. During these assignments, he was On-Scene Commander during the 1996 crash of TWA Flight 800, participated in the seizure of over $300 million in illegal drugs, the interdiction of hundreds of illegal migrants at sea, and the execution of heavy weather search and rescue cases. He was also the first Coast Guard lawyer assigned to support the Department of Defense’s Military Commissions, where he assisted in preparing prosecution cases for some of the most significant terror suspects in U.S. custody. In 2002, Mr. Diamond was chosen by the American Bar Association as the Coast Guard’s “Outstanding Young Military Lawyer.”