Principal, The Chertoff Group
Former Acting Commissioner, U.S. Customs and Border Protection
On January 2, 2010, Jayson P. Ahern retired from 33 years of federal service to both the U.S. Customs Service and U.S. Customs and Border Protection. At the time of his retirement, he had served for nearly a year as Acting Commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and was responsible for securing, managing and controlling our Nation’s borders. He has served as CBP’s Deputy Commissioner, the highest career position in the agency. During his interim appointment as Acting Commissioner, Mr. Ahern continued to serve as Chief Operating Officer, overseeing the daily operations of CBP’s 58,000 employee workforce and managing an operating budget of over $11 billion. Mr. Ahern’s primary focus was keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country, while also carrying out CBP’s other border-related responsibilities.
From June 2002 until August 2007, Mr. Ahern served as the Assistant Commissioner for CBP’s Office of Field Operations, a position he also held with the former U.S. Customs Service. As Assistant Commissioner, Mr. Ahern managed all Field Operations in domestic and foreign locations, as well as critical national security and operational programs. In 2003, when the Department of Homeland Security was created, Mr. Ahern presided over the historic merger of personnel from three of CBP’s legacy agencies and ensured mission continuity during the largest government reorganization in the last 50 years.