The U.S. Department of Homeland Security recently announced that it will appoint a number of business chief executives to an independent advisory council. Among those executives is GM CEO Mary Barra.
According to a report from Reuters, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said that he would add a total of 33 members to the council ahead of its first meeting on Monday. The council will work to “define the department’s strategic vision, strengthen the department to better meet the increasingly dynamic and rapidly evolving threat landscape, and harness technology and innovation to modernize the programs it administers.”
In addition to appointing GM CEO Mary Barra, the council will also have the chief executives from United Airlines, Bank of America, Polaris, Duke Energy, Chobani, and Oracle among its ranks. Further members include former Cabinet secretaries that served under both Republican and Democratic presidents, plus executive leaders from non-profit organizations and law enforcement organizations.
Traditionally, the council provides independent advice to the Homeland Security secretary, while also undertaking research and policy analysis with regard to national security issues. According to Mayorkas, the council selections were made from a “diverse array of fields with a diverse breadth of expertise, so that not only can we tap that expertise, but quite frankly, we can hear from them the concerns that they have.”
“I want to hear different perspectives from different backgrounds, different expertise, different experience,” Mayorkas said.
Several automakers, including General Motors, were impacted by disruptions resulting from the Canadian trucking protests held last month, which resulted in production delays at GM facilities after protesters blocked Ambassador Bridge, which connects Detroit to Windsor, Ontario.
Last year, Mayorkas dismissed nearly the entire council upon his arrival, which, at the time, included former Trump-era officials like Tom Homan and Ken Cuccinelli. None of those members remain on the reconstituted council, although former DEA administrator Karen Tandy and New York City Police Commissioner William Bratton are still onboard with the council leadership.