"Loyalty to this President, commitment to public service and the safety of our country, and never having a dull day are what keep me going."
–Jeh Johnson, U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security
"When I grow up, I want to be a policeman." "I am going to fight fires and save people when I am big." These are common remarks heard from children because many look up to these public safety workers and see them as their heroes. As we get older, we understand on a deeper level the importance of the courage and selflessness of these men and women who work every day to keep us safe. Whether devoted to keeping our cities safe and defending our country abroad through homeland security positions, enforcing the law through work in criminal justice and law enforcement, or tackling emergency situations as firefighters and emergency responders, public safety professionals across many fields are essential to the survival and wellbeing of our country, and our world.
Jeh Johnson, the U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security, has one of the most important public safety jobs in the nation: protecting the lives of the American people.
Starting his career working at the elite law firm of Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP after receiving his law degree, Jeh then pursued his longtime goal of a career in public service through three separate stints in public service, including serving as General Counsel for the Department of Defense. In this role, he oversaw the development of the legal aspects of many of our nation's counterterrorism policies, spearheaded reforms to the military commissions system at Guantanamo Bay in 2009, and paved the way for the repeal of the military's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy in 2010.
And with the recent surge of terrorist groups around the globe and homegrown terror attacks, Jeh's current public safety job as the fourth Secretary of Homeland Security, which he has held since 2013, certainly isn't an easy one. But in his own words, no easy problems reach him, because if they were easy, they would have been solved already. This statement sums up the fearlessness, diligence, and dedication required in order to shine in the public safety field.
Protecting society is more than a career-it's a calling. Like Jeh Johnson, professionals in public safety should feel proud knowing that their work is helping make a difference. Their actions and commitment to their calling have a powerful impact on the lives of others on a daily basis.
The views and opinions expressed in this blog are solely those of the author(s) and are not attributable to Kaplan University.
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