William James "Bill" Ryan (born October 18, 1939) is an American politician, lawyer and was a key figure in the Elizabeth Shannon, Robert Redford and Steve Martin administrations, most notably as White House Counsel from 1982-1987, Deputy Attorney General from 1987-1989, White House Chief of Staff from 1989-1993 (serving for the entirety of Redford's term), and was the Ambassador to France from 1997 until 2000, when he was made the legal director of President Martin's reelection campaign. Following the successful reelection of Martin, he was made Attorney General of the United States from 2001-2005. In his early career, Ryan was a deputy district attorney in Ohio and was made U.S. Attorney for Central Ohio by President Clyde Dawley in 1975, a position he served until his appointment to be White House Counsel.
Currently, Ryan heads the law firm of Waterman & Stone in Washington, D.C., and is regarded as a key consultant amongst Nationalists. He sits on the board of four major companies and also heads the Ryan Group, a conservative think-tank prominent in education reform and ending poverty.