Kimberly St. Cin
Extra Credit Assignment
The Department of Homeland Security
The Department of Homeland Security has a vital mission: to secure the nation from the many threats we face. It was formed in 2002 after the September 11th attacks and officially opened its doors on March 1, 2003. The Department of Homeland Security employs more than 240,000 people and their jobs range from aviation and border patrol to cybersecurity. Their main goal is to keep American safe from terrorism and many other hazards (www.dhs.gov). It also provides coordinated and complete federal response in the case of a terrorist attack, natural disaster or national emergency. They work together with federal, state, local, and private sector partners to ensure a quick but effective recovery effort. Eleven days after the 911 terrorist attacks Tom Ridge was appointed as the first director of Homeland Security. In November 2002 the Homeland Security Act was passed in Congress. Tom Ridge served as Secretary of Homeland Security from January 24, 2003-February 1, 2005. The current Secretary of Homeland Security is Jeh Johnson. Mr. Johnson was sworn in in December 23, 2013. Previously he served as General Counsel for the Department of Defense. As General Counsel of the Department of Defense he played a major role in certain key priorities of the Obama Administration. In December 2012 he resigned from this position effective at the end of that year. Johnson’s career includes services in National Security, law enforcement and as an attorney at a private law firm. He graduated from Morehouse College in 1979 and received his law degree from Columbia Law School in 1982 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeh_Johnson).
In the news, Secretary Johnson recently made a trip to China to discuss issues of shared concern, which included topics such as counterrorism, customs, immigration, cybersecurity and maritime security. This meeting was prior to China’s President Xin Jinpings 2015 visit to the United States. Johnson states that the meeting consisted of frank exchanges of views and matters about which they disagree. They have agreed to move forward onto matters in which they can agree upon. (http://www.dhs.gov/news/2015/04/11/readout-secretary-johnsons-trip-china).
In other news, the Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson, published the Fiscal Year 2015 Notices of Funding Opportunity for nine DHS preparedness grant programs exceeding more than $1.6 billion. The programs deliver funding to state, local, tribal and territorial governments, as well as transportation authorities, nonprofit organizations, and the private sector, to expand the nation’s promptness in preventing terrorist attacks, major disasters and other emergencies. The grants display the Department’s focus on ensuring a secure and resilient nation