After disbanding a prominent advisory council a year ago to review how to utilize it going forward, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas on Thursday reconstituted the bipartisan group, adding a number of new members and named former Clinton-era Deputy Attorney General Jamie Gorelick as a co-chair.
William Bratton, the former Los Angeles Police Commissioner and New York City Police Chief, who was appointed to the Homeland Security Advisory Council (HSAC) as a vice-chair during the Obama administration, retains his most recent role as co-chair on the reconstituted panel.
Mayorkas reappointed some members of the HSAC that were on the panel during the Trump administration and earlier including Jayson Ahern, Gorelick, Carie Lemack and Ali Soufan. In addition to Bratton, former FBI Director William Webster continue as chair emeritus and Karen Tandy as vice chair. Tandy led the Drug Enforcement Administration during the administration of former President George W. Bush.
The new members represent a variety of interests and stakeholders and among others include cybersecurity expert Dmitri Alperovitch, venture capitalist and entrepreneur Marc Andreessen, Mary Barra, chair and CEO of General Motors Company [GM], Safra Catz, the CEO of Oracle Corp. [ORCL], who also served on former President Trump’s transition team in 2016 and was on the National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence, Michael Chertoff, former DHS secretary under President Bush and co-founder of the strategic advisory firm The Chertoff Group, Robert Isom, the incoming CEO for American Airlines [AAL], former Obama Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, Vincent Talucci, CEO of the International Association of Chiefs of Police, Patrick Yoes, national president of the Fraternal Order of Police, and Wendy Young, president of Kids in Need of Defense.
Some of HSAC members that were serving at the end of the Trump administration include foreign policy expert James Carafano who is with the Heritage Foundation, cybersecurity expert Frank Cilluffo, Michael Jackson, a former DHS deputy secretary during the Bush administration, Cathy Lanier, the head of security for the National Football League and former chief of police for Washington, D.C., and Chad Sweet, the other co-founder of The Chertoff Group.
HSAC members appointed during the Trump administration that were not reappointed by Mayorkas include Ken Cuccinelli, who was acting head of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services and later the acting deputy secretary of DHS under Trump, and Tom Homan, who led Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Both are considered hardliners on immigration.
DHS said further appointments to the HSAC are expected in the near future.
The HSAC will host its first meeting during the Biden administration next Monday. The last reports produced by the panel came out in November 2020 and provided advice and recommendations on biometrics, economic security, quantum information science, and risk reduction for information and communications technology.
“Together, we will ensure that the department is best positioned to meet the challenges we confront today, foresee and be ready for the challenges of tomorrow, capitalize on the power of technological innovation, and serve our country by living up to our highest ideals,” Mayorkas said in a statement.