Since July 2013, Mr. Aki has served as the Port Director for the San Ysidro/Otay Mesa Port of Entry San Diego Field Office, U.S. Customs and Border Protection. His responsibilities include running the operational activities/administrative oversight of two major locations; and directing more than 1,200 employees. With a daily volume of more than 60,000 passenger vehicles, 30,000 pedestrians, approximately 200 buses, and arriving general aviation aircraft; the San Ysidro/Otay Mesa is the largest and the busiest land port of entry in the world.
In July 2011, Mr. Aki has served as the Service Port Director, Laredo Port of Entry, Laredo Field Office, U.S. Customs and Border Protection. His responsibilities include the operational and administrative oversight of six major operational locations in the State of Texas, and directing approximately 1,000 employees. He manages the day-to-day operations of the largest inland port of entry (Laredo Port of Entry), which process the most commercial truck traffic on the U.S.-Mexico border; in fiscal year 2012, the port processed over 3 million pedestrians, over 1.7 million commercial trucks, 4.8 million privately owned vehicles, 39,862 commercial buses, 392,084 rail cars, and 3,364 commercial aircrafts.
In September of 2008, Mr. Aki has served as the Assistant Director, Border Security at the Detroit Field Office, U.S. Customs and Border Protection. His responsibilities included assisting with the operational oversight of seven major ports of entry in the State of Michigan, assisting with the direction of more than 1,300 employees. In this capacity, Mr. Aki’s responsibilities included: implementing anti-terrorism and anti-smuggling initiatives; traveler admissibility policies; managing the overall passenger operations (air, sea, and land); non intrusive inspection technology; liaison with public/private stakeholders; intelligence gathering/sharing; and special enforcement operations to ensure optimal border integrity.
In September of 2006, Mr. Aki served as the Port Director at the Detroit Metropolitan Airport, Romulus, Michigan, for U.S. Customs and Border Protection. He managed an operating budget of over $10 million and directed the activities of over 260 employees. His responsibilities included oversight of the operational activities at the Detroit Metropolitan Airport, Oakland-Pontiac Airport, Lansing International Airport, Grand Rapids International Airport, Battle-Creek Airport, and the Willow Run Airport.
Mr. Aki also previously served as a Policy Advisor for the Under Secretary of Policy, Department of Homeland Security from September 2005 through July 2006. In that capacity, he provided assistance and oversight in the development of policy for border security-related issues. Prior to this role Mr. Aki also served as a Policy Advisor for the Commissioner’s Office of Policy and Planning (September 2004 – September 2005).
Additionally, Mr. Aki also served in the following positions on a temporary basis: In 2012, Acting Director, Field Operations for the San Diego Field Office; in 2010, Acting Port Director, JFK International Airport; and the Acting Director, Field Operations for the Miami and Tampa Field Offices.
Mr. Aki began his career in 1996 as an Inspector with the former Immigration and Naturalization Service at the Port of Calexico, California.
Mr. Aki believes in building a solid foundation of efficient “teamwork” concept throughout his workforce. Additionally, he believes in leading by example and providing clear and concise direction toward attainable goals, which are commensurate with the mission of CBP to effectively secure our Nation’s borders, while at the same time facilitating legitimate trade and travel into the United States.
Mr. Aki is a native of Honolulu, Hawaii and is a graduate of Saint Martin’s College (1990), Lacey, Washington, and has a Bachelors Degree in Criminal Justice. Mr. Aki is a senior executive fellow at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government and the National Defense University’s CAPSTONE Program. He is married and has two sons.
Sidney Aki Sessions
June 18, 2019 @ 10:30 am - 11:45 am
This panel will discuss the complexities of managing land border operations in the United States and Europe. Specific focus will be directed at the Port-of-Entry (POE) and between the POEs. Both the US and European models will be highlighted and will highlight the challenges of achieving a unified and integrated approach toward border enforcement.