Board Members

Susan Swenson (Chairwoman)

Susan Swenson (Chairwoman)

Telecommunications/technology executive
Term expires: August 2019

Susan Swenson brings extensive experience as a telecommunications and technology executive to the FirstNet Board. She has served as President and CEO of business software provider Sage North America from 2008-2011. Ms. Swenson also served as COO of digital content company, New Motion/Atrinsic, mobile virtual network operator, Amp’d Mobile, and T-Mobile USA. She was also President and COO of Leap Wireless, International (Cricket Communications) from 1999-2004 and President and CEO of Cellular One from 1994-1999. Ms. Swenson serves on the board of Directors of Wells Fargo, Spirent Communications, Harmonic, and Novatel Wireless, where she was appointed CEO in October 2015. She also currently serves on the Dean's Advisory Board of the Paul Merage School of Business at the University of California, Irvine.

Jeffrey Johnson (Vice Chairman)

Jeffrey Johnson (Vice Chairman)

Fire Chief, retired; CEO Western Fire Chiefs Association
Former Chair, State Interoperability Council, State of Oregon
Term expires: August 2019

Jeffrey Johnson has an extensive public safety background, with broad experience at both the local and national level. Chief Johnson served as Chair of Oregon’s Statewide Interoperability Executive Council, which is transitioning from four independent state-owned radio networks into a single interoperable modern voice and data network. Prior to that, Chief Johnson was the Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue Fire Chief/CEO for 15 years. Chief Johnson is very active nationally on public safety communications matters, and has served on the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) Board of Directors and served as President and Chairman of the Board. He is now CEO of the Western Fire Chiefs Association and served as a representative of the SAFECOM Emergency Response Council. Chief Johnson is a graduate of Concordia University.

Chris Burbank

Chris Burbank

Chief of Police, Salt Lake City UT (ret)
Term expires: August 2017

Chief Chris Burbank was the 45th Chief of the Salt Lake City Police Department and served with the Department since 1991. He was appointed to be Venue Commander for the 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Olympic Games, where he also served as a liaison to the U.S. Secret Service. For his support of the games, Chief Burbank was recognized by Utah Governor Michael Leavitt for his contribution to the law enforcement volunteer program and by Major General Brian L. Tarbet, Adjutant General, Utah National Guard, for exceptional meritorious service. He was chosen by the Salt Lake Tribune as Utahn of the Year for 2011. Chief Burbank currently serves as the First Vice President of the Major Cities Chiefs Association and was Chair of the Valley Police Alliance during its inception. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Utah and is a graduate of the FBI’s National Executive Institute.

Neil E. Cox

Neil E. Cox

Telecommunications / technology executive
Term Expires: August 2018

Neil E. Cox has decades of experience with telecommunications, Information Technology, and security monitoring services and is currently the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Repio, Inc., which provides a platform for individuals and companies to search, filter, organize, and take control of their online information and image. Mr. Cox has also served as Executive Vice President of Qwest Communications, where he oversaw all product and business development, as well as the company's IT operations. He was a partner in MK Capital, a venture capital firm investing in application software and applied technology businesses, and has served as Executive Vice President of Science Applications International Corp. (SAIC), where his responsibilities included digital convergence, next generation networks, and broadband for both fixed and wireless networks. Mr. Cox began his career at the Indiana Bell Telephone Company as the manager of engineering and operations. After working at Bell Communications Research, he joined Ameritech Cellular in 1987 and served through 2001, where he took on positions of increasing responsibility for the company’s cellular and information-based business in the United States and globally. Mr. Cox earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering Technology from Purdue University.

James H. Douglas

James H. Douglas

Former Governor, Vermont
Term Expires: August 2017

Governor James H. Douglas served as the 80th Governor of Vermont from 2003 to 2011. Before that he served in a number of positions in the state over three decades. He served as a member of the Vermont House of Representatives, Secretary of State, and State Treasurer. While Governor, he was the chair of the National Governors Association and was the president of the Council of State Governments. Governor Douglas also served as chair of the New England Governors' Conference and the Coalition of Northeastern Governors. In February 2010 President Obama appointed him to be co-chair of the Council of Governors. He is now an Executive in Residence at Middlebury College, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree. Governor Douglas serves on the boards of several local companies and is on the Governors Advisory Council of the Bipartisan Policy Center in Washington. He is also the Town Moderator for Middlebury, a post he has held for 25 years.

Edward Horowitz

Edward Horowitz

Venture capital / technology executive
Term Expires: August 2018

Edward Horowitz has extensive leadership experience in the telecommunications, media, and financial services sectors. He is currently the founder and chairman of Edslink, LLC, a venture capital firm providing financial, advisory, and technology consulting services. He has served as Co-CEO of Encompass Digital Media, a provider of worldwide television channel origination, live sports and news distribution, digital media, and government services. Prior to Encompass, he was President and CEO of SES AMERICOM, a satellite operator serving the entertainment and broadcast media industries, business enterprises, and the U.S. government. Mr. Horowitz founded and served as Chairman of e-Citi, which is a unit of Citigroup, and was Senior Vice President, Viacom Inc., Chairman and CEO of Viacom Broadcast and Interactive Media groups, and a member of the Viacom Executive Committee. Mr. Horowitz currently serves as Chairman of the Board of Fairpoint Communications. He has served on the Encompass Board since 2010 and also is a member of the boards of PT Link Net, Globecomm Systems, Inc., The Tennis Channel, U.S. Space LLC, OmniSpace LLC, and the non-profit American Management Association (AMA). Mr. Horowitz holds a B.S. in Physics from CCNY and a Masters of Business from Columbia University.

Jeff Sessions

Jeff  Sessions

Attorney General of the United States (DOJ)
Term: Ex-Officio

Jeff Sessions was sworn in as the 84th Attorney General of the United States on February 9, 2017. Prior to becoming Attorney General, Mr. Sessions served as a United States Senator for Alabama. As a United States Senator, he focused his energies on maintaining a strong military, upholding the rule of law, limiting the role of government, and providing tax relief to stimulate economic growth and to empower Americans to keep more of their hard-earned money. Mr. Sessions served in the United States Army Reserve, and served as the United States Attorney for the Southern District of Alabama. Mr. Sessions was elected Alabama Attorney General and served as the State’s chief legal officer he entered the United States Senate.

Christopher M. Piehota

Christopher M. Piehota

Department of Justice Designee

John Kelly

John Kelly

Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security
Term: Ex-Officio

Prior to his appointment as Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, Secretary Kelly served in the United States Marine Corps for 45 years closing his career as the commander of the United States Southern Command (USSOUTHCOM) in 2016. Secretary Kelly has held senior command positions in Iraq and as the Senior Military Assistant to two Secretaries of Defense

David Hess

David Hess

Department of Homeland Security Designee

Kevin McGinnis

Kevin McGinnis

Chief/CEO, North East Mobile Health Services, MPS, Paramedic Chief (Ret.), Communications Technology Advisor at National Association of State EMS Officials, National Association of EMTs, National Association of EMS Physicians, National EMS Management Association, and National Association of EMS Educators
Term Expires: August 2018

Kevin McGinnis’ career in Emergency Medical Services (EMS) spans 40 years, and he is a nationally recognized advocate for broadband communications within the EMS community. Mr. McGinnis is currently Community Paramedicine Chief of North East Mobile Health Services, the largest paramedic service in Maine. He has been the chief of volunteer, hospital based and private paramedic services, has been the director of a teaching hospital emergency department and was the state EMS director in Maine for ten years. Mr. McGinnis was the primary EMS community supporter of the several year initiative that led to FirstNet. He is the FirstNet Board liaison to America’s tribes, helping to facilitate FirstNet planning for their public safety and telecommunications efforts. He was named by the Government Technology/Solutions for State and Local Government magazine as one of its 2013 'Top 25 Doers, Dreamers & Drivers in Public-Sector Innovation'.

Mick Mulvaney

Mick Mulvaney

Director, Office of Management and Budget
Term: Ex-Officio

Mick Mulvaney is the current director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). He was nominated to the post by President Donald J. Trump in December 2016 and confirmed by the Senate on February 16, 2017. Prior to his time as the director of OMB, he served the people of the 5th District of South Carolina as their Congressman where he was first elected in 2010. He attended Georgetown University, graduating with honors in International Economics, Commerce, and Finance. He received his law degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and completed his formal education at Harvard Business School's OPM program in 2006.

Kathleen Kraninger

Kathleen Kraninger

Office of Management and Budget Designee

Annise D. Parker


Term Expires: August 2018

Mayor Annise D. Parker was the 61st Mayor of Houston, Texas, and one of only two women to hold the city’s highest elected office. She is the only person in Houston history to hold the offices of council member, controller, and mayor. Time magazine named her as one of the 100 most influential people in the world. She has also served as a member of President Obama’s Task Force on Climate Preparedness and Resilience, chair of the U.S. Conference of Mayors Criminal and Social Justice Committee, and as a member of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary’s Advisory Council. Mayor Parker serves on the boards of the Texas Environmental Research Consortium and Houston Galveston Area Council. Mayor Parker graduated from Rice University with a Bachelor of Arts degree and worked in the oil and gas industry for 20 years.

Ed Reynolds

Ed Reynolds

Telecommunications executive (retired)
Term expires: August 2017

Ed Reynolds is a pioneer in the wireless telecommunications industry. He served as president of Network Operations for Cingular Wireless prior to its acquisition by AT&T. Mr. Reynolds also served as president of BellSouth Mobility, which provided wireless service across seven southeastern states. He was responsible for BellSouth’s worldwide wireless communications strategy and the development and test marketing of new wireless features and technologies. Mr. Reynolds earned degrees from Auburn University and the University of Alabama.

Richard W. Stanek

Richard W. Stanek

Sheriff, Hennepin County, Minnesota
Term expires: August 2017

Sheriff Richard W. Stanek has served as the 27th Sheriff of Hennepin County (Minnesota) since 2007. Before that, he was a Commander at the Minneapolis Police Department and served as a five-term legislator in the Minnesota House of Representatives, where he chaired the House Crime Policy and Finance Committee. He was appointed to serve as Minnesota’s Commissioner of Public Safety and Director of Homeland Security in 2003. Sheriff Stanek serves on the National Sheriffs’ Association (NSA) Executive Committee and chairs the NSA’s Homeland Security Committee. He holds a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from Hamline University and received a Bachelor’s Degree in criminal justice from the University of Minnesota.

Teri Takai

Teri Takai

Government information technology expert; former CIO, states of Michigan and California
Term expires: August 2019

Teri Takai has vast experience working on state government information technology issues, previously serving as Chief Information Officer (CIO) for California and Michigan. She is also a past president of the National Association of State Chief Information Officers. Ms. Takai was the Defense Department's CIO and the principal advisor to the Secretary of Defense for Information Management/ Information Technology and Information Assurance, as well as non-intelligence space systems, critical satellite communications, navigation and timing programs, spectrum, and telecommunications. She is currently CIO and Executive Vice President of Detroit-based Meridian Health Plan. She also serves on the Harvard Policy Group on Network-Enabled Services and Government. Before serving in government, Ms. Takai worked for the Ford Motor Company for 30 years, where she led the development of the company's information technology strategic plan. Ms. Takai is a graduate of the University of Michigan.

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