Mr. Kussman served as Senior Policy Advisor to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Commissioner Robert C. Bonner from Oct. 2003 to December 2005. In 2005, Commissioner Bonner named him Director of Policy for CBP. In that capacity, Mr. Kussman led the development and coordination of agency-wide policy for CBP.
Mr. Kussman has extensive experience on homeland security matters related to border security, terrorism, international trade & travel, customs, immigration, transportation, and intelligence.
While serving as Senior Policy Advisor to Commissioner Bonner and Director of Policy for CBP, Mr. Kussman:
- Advised Commissioner Bonner on a wide array of matters relating to CBP operations and policies, including the integration of CBP into one agency following the creation of CBP and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
- Advised Commissioner Bonner and the Chief of the Border Patrol on policies and operations related to the transition of the Border Patrol into CBP and the establishment of a more nationally-directed, headquarters driven Border Patrol, including:
- Drafting and implementing the new National Border Patrol Strategy.
- Reorganizing and re-invigorating the Border Patrol's new headquarters structure.
- Developing the policies and strategies for the America's Shield Initiative (ASI).
- Developing strategies for the use by CBP and the Border Patrol of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs).
- Coordinated CBP's efforts, in conjunction with DHS, to develop and implement the Secure Border Initiative (SBI).
- Led CBP's process of creating CBP Air, which resulted from the merger of former Air and Marine Operations unit with the U.S. Border Patrol's aviation division into a single integrated office within CBP. CBP Air is the largest civilian law enforcement air program in the world.
- Directed CBP's efforts to coordinate CBP policies and operations with the Detention and Removals Office (DRO) of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
- Led CBP's coordinated effort to expand the use of expedited removal procedures, for the first time, to Border Patrol Agents operating between ports of entry. This effort involved developing regulations, policies and procedures, providing training to thousands of Border Patrol Agents, and coordinating the implementation of this program with ICE and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (CIS).
- Served as CBP's primary representative to the Interagency Incident Management Group (IIMG), which advises the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security on important policy and operational issues during significant incidents and contingencies.
- Developed international, multilateral, and bilateral strategies for increasing the security of our borders, including:
- The Arizona Border Control Initiative (ABCI);
- The Immigration Advisory Program (IAP);
- Coordinated CBP's participation in the Security and Prosperity Partnership (SPP);
- Coordinated CBP policies related to the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative, the National Security Entry Exit Registration System (NSEERS), and the biometric collection of information from travelers.
closely with the Homeland Security Council, the State Department, the
DHS Offices of the Secretary, the United States Coast Guard, and the
Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement on visa, immigration,
maritime security, intelligence, and other homeland security matters.
Before serving in the Department of Homeland Security, Mr. Kussman was an attorney with the San Francisco office of O'Melveny and Myers, where he specialized in intellectual property litigation and white-collar criminal defense.
Mr. Kussman also served as a Lieutenant in the U.S. Navy Reserve.
Mr. Kussman is a 1998 graduate, with honors, of the University of Chicago Law School. He graduated cum laude from Williams College in 1994.