U.S. Sen. Gary Hart (retired) was sworn in as vice chair of the Homeland Security Advisory Council at a meeting June 5 in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Hart, who holds the Wirth Chair at the School of Public Affairs and is renowned for his expertise in international affairs and national security, was named to the council by Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano.
The 20-member council is chaired by Judge William Webster, former director of the CIA and the FBI. It is charged with providing expert advice on matters of national security ranging from managing the nation’s borders to protecting the country from terrorist threats.
“As we work to fulfill the department’s core mission of securing the country against the many threats it faces, the unique insights and expertise of this diverse council will be a valuable resource,” said Napolitano in announcing the appointments.
Hart said that the Homeland Security Advisory Council “represents senior policymakers and leading first-responders across the nation, and it will increasingly suggest innovative ways for Secretary Napolitano to fulfill her duties to keep the nation safe. The Department’s responsibilities span counter-terrorism, drug traffic, immigration, the Secret Service, Coast Guard, and a host of other obligations, including leading a more affective Federal Emergency Management Agency. The department and its advisory council have a massive job on our hands.”
Among the other members of the council are Leroy Baca, sheriff of Los Angeles County; Manny Diaz, mayor of Miami; Clark Kent Ervin, director of the Aspen Institute’s Homeland Security Program; Louis Freeh, senior managing partner of Freeh Group International and former director of the FBI; Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue; Joe Shirley Jr., president of the Navajo Nation; Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley; Frances Fragos Townsend, partner at Baker Botts L.L.P.; and others.