The Department of Homeland Security’s physical footprint in Washington is as sprawling as its mandate. DHS doesn’t have a single headquarters. Rather, it has dozens of offices for the agencies that fall under its control.
For Janet Napolitano, a former two-term Arizona governor accustomed to wide-open desert roads, commuting through city traffic between all these facilities, not to mention the White House and Congress, means being prepared. “They tell me 15 minutes, and I plan for 30. And that’s with an escort,” Napolitano says with a grimace. She’s only the third person to take the reins of DHS, following Tom Ridge and Michael Chertoff.