On January 22, 1944, President Roosevelt establishes (with Executive Order 9417) the War Refugee Board (WRB) under the Secretaries of State, Treasury and War, under the leadership of John W. Pehle, the head of the Foreign Funds Control office within the Department of the Treasury.

The establishment of the WRB signaled to Germany the increasing concern of the U.S. government with the victims of the war.