Rich Cooper blogs primarily on emergency preparedness and response, management issues related to the Department of Homeland Security, and the private sector’s role in homeland security.
Cooper currently serves as Senior Industry Counselor for Homeland Security and Justice Programs at SAS. He is the former Business Liaison Director for the US Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Private Sector Office (PSO), where he built relationships and networks with private sector companies and organizations to ensure that open channels of communication and engagement were created to aid critical areas and programs. Mr. Cooper also served as the PSO’s primary liaison with the Science & Technology and Preparedness Directorates.
During his time at DHS, Mr. Cooper also took an active leadership role in the formation of Department policies, strategies, communications and programs for private sector preparedness and business continuity/recovery working closely with Hurricane Katrina & Rita Relief efforts, the 9/11 Commission, the Ready – Business campaigns and other organizations and efforts committed to ensuring the security and viability of the private sector. He has also led Department efforts to establish a formal relationship with NASA to share research and testing in key homeland security areas; with the US Department of Labor to forge the next generation of homeland security workforce; and a comprehensive study investigating a venture capital approach to enhance the development, deployment and transfer of homeland security technologies.
Before joining DHS, Cooper served as a Senior Policy Advisor at NASA Headquarters in Washington, D.C. working as the Special Assistant to the NASA Administrator and Chief of Staff/White House Liaison. His other positions included his assignment as the Program Architect for NASA’s Educator Astronaut Program responsible for the design, operation and implementation of the first new position in the astronaut corps in more than 25 years; and strategic communications and editorial response for the Shuttle Columbia accident where his works were published/presented in the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, the Washington Post, the New Orleans Times Picayune, NASA Television and others.
Cooper formerly served as vice president of U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s nonprofit, public policy think tank. In this role, he led Foundation in examining the issues that will impact the United States and its private sector over the next 2 to 10 years. He led a diverse team of fellows, researchers, and program managers who presented programming, publications, and events to better inform and best prepare the Chamber’s leaders, members, and stakeholders for the future.
Cooper also formerly served as the Chairman of the Homeland Security Division of the National Defense Industrial Association (NDIA); is a member of the American National Standards Institute’s Homeland Security Standards Panel (ANSI-HSSP); and is an Advisor to New York University’s International Center for Enterprise Preparedness (InterCEP).