|United States Secretary of Homeland Security|
Seal of the Department
Flag of the Secretary
|United States Department of Homeland Security|
|Member of|| Cabinet |
Homeland Security Council
|Reports to||President of the United States|
|Seat|| Nebraska Avenue Complex |
|Appointer||The President |
with Senate advice and consent
|Term length||No fixed term|
|Constituting instrument||6 U.S.C. § 112|
|Formation||January 24, 2003|
|First holder||Tom Ridge|
|Deputy||Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security|
|Salary||Executive Schedule, level I|
The United States Secretary of Homeland Security is the head of the United States Department of Homeland Security, the body concerned with protecting the U.S. and the safety of U.S. citizens. The secretary is a member of the President's Cabinet. The position was created by the Homeland Security Act following the attacks of September 11, 2001. The new department consisted primarily of components transferred from other cabinet departments because of their role in homeland security, such as the Coast Guard, the Federal Protective Service, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (which includes the Border Patrol), U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (which includes Homeland Security Investigations), the Secret Service, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency. It did not include either the Federal Bureau of Investigation or the Central Intelligence Agency.
The United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is a cabinet department of the U.S. federal government with responsibilities in public security, roughly comparable to the interior or home ministries of other countries. Its stated missions involve anti-terrorism, border security, immigration and customs, cyber security, and disaster prevention and management. It was created in response to the September 11 attacks and is the youngest U.S. cabinet department.
The president of the United States (POTUS) is the head of state and head of government of the United States of America. The president directs the executive branch of the federal government and is the commander-in-chief of the United States Armed Forces.
The Homeland Security Act (HSA) of 2002, was introduced in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks and subsequent mailings of anthrax spores. The HSA was cosponsored by 118 members of Congress. The act passed the U.S. Senate by one vote, with the pivotal vote in a tied Senate being cast by Independent Dean Barkley. It was signed into law by President George W. Bush in November 2002.
Kevin McAleenan is the Acting Secretary of Homeland Security, upon the resignation of Kirstjen Nielsen.
Kevin K. McAleenan is an American attorney and government official serving as the Acting Secretary of Homeland Security. He also serves as the U.S. Customs and Border Protection commissioner.
Kirstjen Michele Nielsen is an American attorney who was the sixth United States Secretary of Homeland Security. She is a former Principal Deputy White House Chief of Staff to President Donald Trump and was chief of staff to John F. Kelly during his term as Secretary of Homeland Security.
Traditionally, the order of the presidential line of succession is determined (after the Vice President, Speaker of the House, and President pro tempore of the Senate) by the order of the creation of the cabinet positions, and the list as mandated under 3 U.S.C. § 19 follows this tradition.[ citation needed ]
The United States presidential line of succession is the order in which officials of the United States federal government discharge the powers and duties of the office of President of the United States if the incumbent president becomes incapacitated, dies, resigns, or is removed from office. Presidential succession is referred to multiple times in the U.S. Constitution – Article II, Section 1, Clause 6, as well as the 12th Amendment, 20th Amendment, and 25th Amendment. The Article II succession clause authorizes Congress to provide for a line of succession beyond the vice president, which it has done on three occasions. The current Presidential Succession Act was adopted in 1947, and last revised in 2006.
The Vice President of the United States is the second-highest officer in the executive branch of the U.S. federal government, after the President of the United States, and ranks first in the presidential line of succession. The Vice President is also an officer in the legislative branch, as President of the Senate. In this capacity, the Vice President presides over Senate deliberations, but may not vote except to cast a tie-breaking vote. The Vice President also presides over joint sessions of Congress.
The Speaker of the United States House of Representatives is the presiding officer of the United States House of Representatives. The office was established in 1789 by Article I, Section 2 of the U.S. Constitution. The Speaker is the political and parliamentary leader of the House of Representatives, and is simultaneously the House's presiding officer, de facto leader of the body's majority party, and the institution's administrative head. Speakers also perform various other administrative and procedural functions. Given these several roles and responsibilities, the Speaker usually does not personally preside over debates. That duty is instead delegated to members of the House from the majority party. Neither does the Speaker regularly participate in floor debates.
On March 7, 2006, 43rd President George W. Bush signed H.R. 3199 as Pub.L. 109–177, which renewed the Patriot Act of 2001 and amended the Presidential Succession Act of 1947 to include the newly created Presidential Cabinet position of Secretary of Homeland Security in the line of succession after the previously authorized Secretary of Veterans Affairs (§ 503) (which are listed and designated in the order that their departments were created). In the 109th Congress, legislation was introduced to place the Secretary of Homeland Security into the line of succession after the Attorney General but that bill expired at the end of the 109th Congress and was not re-introduced.[ citation needed ]
George Walker Bush is an American politician and businessman who served as the 43rd president of the United States from 2001 to 2009. He had previously served as the 46th governor of Texas from 1995 to 2000.
An Act of Congress is a statute enacted by the United States Congress. It can either be a Public Law, relating to the general public, or a Private Law, relating to specific institutions or individuals.
In the United States, a Presidential Succession Act is a federal statute establishing the presidential line of succession. Article II, Section 1, Clause 6 of the United States Constitution authorizes Congress to enact such a statute:
... Congress may by Law provide for the Case of Removal, Death, Resignation or Inability, both of the President and Vice President, declaring what Officer shall then act as President, and such Officer shall act accordingly, until the Disability be removed, or a President shall be elected.
Prior to the establishment of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, there existed an Assistant to the President for the Office of Homeland Security, which was created following the September 11 attacks in 2001.
The September 11 attacks were a series of four coordinated terrorist attacks by the Islamic terrorist group al-Qaeda against the United States on the morning of Tuesday, September 11, 2001. The attacks killed 2,996 people, injured over 6,000 others, and caused at least $10 billion in infrastructure and property damage. Additional people died of 9/11-related cancer and respiratory diseases in the months and years following the attacks.
Republican (2) Democratic (2) Independent (2)
Denotes Acting Homeland Security Secretary
|№||Secretary of Homeland Security||Took office||Left office||Time in office||Party||State of residence||President|
|1||Tom Ridge |
|January 24, 2003||February 1, 2005||years, 8 days2||Republican||Pennsylvania||George W. Bush (Rep)|
|-||James Loy |
|February 1, 2005||February 15, 2005||days14||Independent||Pennsylvania||George W. Bush (Rep)|
|2||Michael Chertoff |
|February 15, 2005||January 21, 2009||years, 341 days3||Republican||New Jersey||George W. Bush (Rep)|
|3||Janet Napolitano |
|January 21, 2009||September 6, 2013||years, 228 days4||Democratic||Arizona||Barack Obama (Dem)|
|-||Rand Beers |
|September 6, 2013||December 16, 2013||days101||Democratic||District of Columbia||Barack Obama (Dem)|
|4||Jeh Johnson |
|December 23, 2013||January 20, 2017||years, 28 days3||Democratic||New Jersey||Barack Obama (Dem)|
|5||John F. Kelly |
|January 20, 2017||July 31, 2017||days192||Independent||Massachusetts||Donald Trump (Rep)|
|-||Elaine Duke |
|July 31, 2017||December 6, 2017||days128||Independent||Ohio||Donald Trump (Rep)|
|6||Kirstjen Nielsen |
|December 6, 2017||April 10, 2019||year, 125 days1||Independent||Florida||Donald Trump (Rep)|
|-||Kevin McAleenan |
|April 11, 2019||Incumbent||days4||Independent||California||Donald Trump (Rep)|
1 James Loy served as acting secretary in his capacity as Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security from February 1, 2005, to February 15, 2005.
James Milton Loy is a retired United States Coast Guard admiral who served as Acting United States Secretary of Homeland Security in 2005 and U.S. Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security (DHS) from December 4, 2003, to March 1, 2005. Prior to his appointment as the DHS Deputy Secretary, he served as the second administrator of the Transportation Security Administration from 2002 to 2003, and before that as the Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard from 1998 to 2002.
The Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security is the chief operating officer of the United States Department of Homeland Security, with responsibility for managing day-to-day operations. The department has over 208,000 employees and an annual budget of more than $48.5 billion.
2 Rand Beers served as acting secretary in his capacity as confirmed Undersecretary of Homeland Security for National Protection and Programs and Acting Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security; Beers was the highest ranking Senate-approved presidential appointee at the Department of Homeland Security from September 6, 2013, to December 23, 2013.
3 Elaine Duke served as acting secretary in her capacity as Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security from July 31, 2017, to December 6, 2017.
4 Kevin McAleenan serves as acting secretary in his capacity as Commissioner of the Customs and Border Protection upon his appointment by President Trump.
As of April 2019, all six former Secretaries of Homeland Security are still living, as are all three former acting Secretaries of Homeland Security. The oldest being former acting Secretary James Loy (born 1942).
|Name||Term||Date of birth (and age)|
|Tom Ridge||January 24, 2003 – February 1, 2005||August 26, 1945|
|Michael Chertoff||February 15, 2005 – January 21, 2009||November 28, 1953|
|Janet Napolitano||January 21, 2009 – September 6, 2013||November 29, 1957|
|Jeh Johnson||December 23, 2013 – January 20, 2017||September 11, 1957|
|John F. Kelly||January 20, 2017 – July 31, 2017||May 11, 1950|
|Kirstjen Nielsen||December 6, 2017 – April 10, 2019||May 14, 1972|
The order of succession for the Secretary of Homeland Security is as follows:
George W. Bush nominated Bernard Kerik for the position in 2004. However a week later, Kerik withdrew his nomination, explaining that he had employed an illegal immigrant as a nanny.
By July 2013, Raymond Kelly had served as Commissioner of the New York City Police Department (NYPD) for nearly 12 straight years. Within days of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano's announcement that she was resigning, Kelly was soon cited as an obvious potential successor by New York Senator Charles Schumer and others.
During a July 16, 2013, interview, President Obama referred generally to the "bunch of strong candidates" for nomination to head the Department of Homeland Security, but singled out Kelly as "one of the best there is" and "very well qualified for the job".
Later in July 2013, the online internet news website/magazine Huffington Post detailed "a growing campaign to quash the potential nomination of New York City Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly as the next secretary of the Department of Homeland Security" amid claims of "divisive, harmful, and ineffective policing that promotes stereotypes and profiling".Days after that article, Kelly penned a statistics-heavy Wall Street Journal opinion article defending the NYPD's programs, stating "the average number of stops we conduct is less than one per officer per week" and that this and other practices have led to "7,383 lives saved—and... they are largely the lives of young men of color."
Kelly was also featured because of his NYPD retirement and unusually long tenure there in a long segment on the CBS News program Sunday Morning in December 2013, especially raising the question of the controversial "stop and frisk" policy in New York City and the long decline and drop of various types of crimes committed.
Homeland security is an American national security umbrella term for "the national effort to ensure a homeland that is safe, secure, and resilient against terrorism and other hazards where American interests, aspirations, and ways of life can thrive to the national effort to prevent terrorist attacks within the United States, reduce the vulnerability of the U.S. to terrorism, and minimize the damage from attacks that do occur". According to an official work published by the Congressional Research Service in 2013 the "Homeland security" term's definition has varied over time.
Continuity of Operations (COOP) is a United States federal government initiative, required by U.S. Presidential Policy Directive 40 (PPD-40), to ensure that agencies are able to continue performance of essential functions under a broad range of circumstances. PPD-40 specifies certain requirements for continuity plan development, including the requirement that all federal executive branch departments and agencies develop an integrated, overlapping continuity capability, that supports the eight National Essential Functions (NEFs) described in the document.
The Secretary of the Treasury is the head of the United States Department of the Treasury which is concerned with financial and monetary matters, and, until 2003, also included several federal law enforcement agencies. This position in the federal government of the United States is analogous to the Minister of Finance in many other countries. The Secretary of the Treasury is a member of the President's Cabinet, and is nominated by the President of the United States. Nominees for Secretary of the Treasury undergo a confirmation hearing before the United States Senate Committee on Finance before being voted on by the United States Senate.
The United States Secretary of the Interior is the head of the United States Department of the Interior. The Department of the Interior in the United States is responsible for the management and conservation of most federal land and natural resources; it oversees such agencies as the Bureau of Land Management, the United States Geological Survey, and the National Park Service. The Secretary also serves on and appoints the private citizens on the National Park Foundation board. The Secretary is a member of the President's Cabinet. The U.S. Department of the Interior should not be confused with the Ministries of the Interior as used in many other countries. Ministries of the Interior in these other countries correspond primarily to the Department of Homeland Security in the U.S. Cabinet and secondarily to the Department of Justice.
The United States order of precedence lists the ceremonial order for domestic and foreign government officials at diplomatic, ceremonial, and social events within the United States and abroad. Former Presidents, Vice Presidents, First Ladies, Second Ladies, and Secretaries of State and retired Supreme Court Justices are also included in the list. The order is established by the President, through the Office of the Chief of Staff, and is maintained by the State Department's Office of the Chief of Protocol. It is only used to indicate ceremonial protocol and has no legal standing; it does not reflect the presidential line of succession or the co-equal status of the branches of government under the Constitution. The Office of the Chief of Protocol posted an updated order of precedence on November 3, 2017.
The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is a law enforcement agency of the federal government of the United States tasked to enforce the immigration laws of the United States and to investigate criminal and terrorist activity of transnational organizations and aliens within the United States. ICE has two primary components: Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO).
Janet Ann Napolitano is an American politician, lawyer, and university administrator who served as the 21st Governor of Arizona from 2003 to 2009 and the United States Secretary of Homeland Security from 2009 to 2013, under President Barack Obama. She has been president of the University of California system since September 2013, shortly after she resigned as Secretary of Homeland Security.
Bernard Bailey Kerik is an American former police officer, consultant and convicted felon, who served as New York City Police Commissioner from 2000 to 2001, and New York City's Correction Department Commissioner and First Deputy, overseeing the New York City jail system, from 1995 to 2000.
The Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency is the head of the United States federal government's Environmental Protection Agency, and is thus responsible for enforcing the nation's Clean Air and Clean Water Acts, as well as numerous other environmental statutes. The Administrator is nominated by the President of the United States and must be confirmed by a vote of the Senate. The office of Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency was created in 1970 in legislation that created the agency.
The Federal Protective Service (FPS) is the uniformed security police division of the National Protection and Programs Directorate of the United States Department of Homeland Security. FPS is "the federal agency charged with protecting and delivering integrated law enforcement and security services to facilities owned or leased by the General Services Administration (GSA)"—over 9,000 buildings—and their occupants.
David V. Aguilar is the former Deputy Commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection. In this position, he oversaw more than 43,000 Federal Agents and Officers. As the nation's highest ranking Border Patrol Agent, Aguilar managed the nation's border control policing. Aguilar retired on Feb. 8, 2013.
Executive Schedule is the system of salaries given to the incumbents of the highest-ranked appointed positions in the executive branch of the U.S. government. The President of the United States appoints incumbents to these positions, most with the advice and consent of the United States Senate. They include members of the President's Cabinet as well as other subcabinet policy makers. There are five pay rates within the Executive Schedule, usually denoted with a Roman numeral with I being the highest level and V the lowest. Federal law lists the positions eligible for the Executive Schedule and the corresponding level. The law also gives the president the ability to grant Executive Schedule IV and V status to no more than 34 employees not listed.
The National Protection and Programs Directorate (NPPD) was a component of the United States Department of Homeland Security. NPPD's goal was to advance the Department's national security mission by reducing and eliminating threats to U.S. critical physical and cyber infrastructure.
David Peter Pekoske is a retired U.S. Coast Guard Vice Admiral who currently serves as the seventh Administrator of the Transportation Security Administration. He concluded his 33 years of active military service in 2010 as the 26th Vice Commandant of the Coast Guard.
Command Consulting Group, "CCG", is an international security and intelligence consulting firm, founded in 2009, headquartered in Washington, D.C., United States. CCG provides advisory services for governments, corporations, and high net worth individuals.
The Federal Vacancies Reform Act of 1998, et seq., is a United States federal statute that establishes the procedure for a filling a vacancy in an appointed officer of an executive agency of the government during the time before a permanent replacement is appointed.
|U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)|
as Secretary of Veterans Affairs
| Order of Precedence of the United States |
as Secretary of Homeland Security
John F. Kelly
as White House Chief of Staff
|U.S. presidential line of succession|
Secretary of Veterans Affairs
|18th in line||Last|