This Tuesday, Heritage’s Chief Legal Officer John Mitnick was nominated to be General Counsel of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. The Senate Homeland Security Committee approved his nomination on Wednesday.
The General Counsel acts as chief legal officer of the Department, responsible for all legal determinations and overseeing all the department’s attorneys. He also acts as the Department’s regulatory policy officer, managing the rule-making program and ensuring that all Department of Homeland Security regulatory actions comply with relevant statutes and executive orders.
Mitnick served as Heritage’s Chief Legal Officer on the senior management team. He advised and oversaw all legal, regulatory, and compliance matters for Heritage and it’s related organizations, and acted as legal advisor and primary staff liaison to Heritage’s Board of Trustees.
Before coming to Heritage, Mitnick was an Associate Counsel to President George W. Bush in the White House, as well as Deputy Counsel for the Homeland Security Council. He also served as the Associate General Counsel for Science and Technology at the Department of Homeland Security.
The wealth of experience and expertise he brings to this position will be of inestimable value to both the administration and the country.
The administration’s preference for Heritage experts is not unprecedented. Former Heritage Chief of Staff and retired Army lieutenant colonel Mark Esper was nominated to Army Secretary by President Trump two months ago. Esper is currently the Vice President of government relations at Raytheon.
Esper’s knowledge of government and defense is both broad and deep. He was a Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense during the George W. Bush administration and the policy director for the House Armed Services Committee. He also served as the Director of national security affairs and is a veteran of the Gulf War.
“This nominee for Army secretary is the real deal — he’s got Army experience, he’s got business experience, he’s got a Ph.D.,” said Sen. David Perdue, R-Ga., a top Trump ally on the Armed Services Committee in The Washington Examiner. “But I just found him to be very engaged, very knowledgeable and he’s got the real passion that we need in that job.”
Although Esper’s confirmation hearing has yet to be scheduled, he has met with several Armed Services members, indicating that a hearing date is coming soon.
Please join me in congratulating John Mitnick and Mark Esper on their nominations.