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John Katko

4-Term Congressman, 20+ year Federal Organized Crime Prosecutor, ABC Contributor

With nearly 20 years as a federal organized crime prosecutor and four terms as a leader on the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Homeland Security, John Katko is a well-established, trusted expert on homeland security, law enforcement, and national security issues. He has become one of the strongest Congressional voices on cyber security, border security, and counterterrorism issues.

Both political parties respect John for his willingness to stay above the fray. He has built a reputation on calling out issues as he sees them—making him a newsworthy guest—all while staying true to his conservative values. He is an honest broker and trusted source with strong connections in Congress.

He has successfully built out a unique niche not often accomplished in this hyper-charged political environment. His clear-headed approach gives him a reasonable perspective on breaking news and homeland security matters. He has quickly become a favorite of many national broadcast producers who rely on him to tell it like it is. The importance of reasonable political leaders on every cable network cannot be overstated.

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The cyber threat landscape has never been so dynamic. Our homeland security, national security, economic security, and way of life are threatened in unprecedented ways by highly sophisticated adversaries. Simply being vigilant is no longer enough. Today’s threat environment demands a posture of unwavering resilience. Unfortunately, cyber-attacks are becoming increasingly part of everyday life for the average American. School systems, libraries, small businesses, healthcare and manufacturing—these entities now have to consider the very real threat of ransomware or malware. While even just 10 years ago the conversation was around how to keep bad actors out of networks, now the focus is one how to detect, mitigate, and eliminate a network intrusion before widespread harm is done. Private companies and government agencies must be putting more emphasis and resources into cybersecurity, as the next battlefield will be in cyberspace.

There is a saying, “there is nothing in the middle of the road but yellow stripes and dead armadillos.” Well, there may be armadillos, but there is also John Katko. Having broke with his party for votes that should not have been controversial, Katko is no stranger to navigating his conservative values in the new political reality of today. During his time in Congress, Katko was ranked the most bipartisan member of Congress, reaching across the aisle to have the most bills signed into law as a freshman and later in his tenure earning him the title of one of the most effective Members of Congress. The importance of reasonable political leaders cannot be overstated. In this hyper-charged environment, where each political party has been pulled to the extremes, the American people often feel that nothing can be accomplished anymore. However, there is path forward and Katko has the handbook.

The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) presents the greatest 50-year threat to the U.S. homeland. The United States is in a great powers’ competition with China, the likes of which will determine the future of the world as we know it. Due to the significant entanglement of the two countries, the homeland security mission to counter and curb China has never been more important. We know the CCP will stop at nothing as it carries out its mission for global military dominance by 2049. The future of U.S. economic security hinges on the Western world’s synchronized and united front to combat the growing aggression out of China. Katko led the charge within Congress to move the 2021 Winter Olympics out of Beijing, and ultimately called for a U.S. boycott.

With over 20 years as a federal prosecutor with the U.S. Department of Justice and over a decade as a lawmaker, Katko has built a career on navigating the legal system. He has argued before the U.S. Supreme Court and led the legal teams of high-profile cases against expansive criminal organizations. He has prosecuted hundreds of complex criminal cases including organized crime, drug and human trafficking, murder, and political corruption. Whether headline-grabbing cases or run-of-the mill proceedings, every case has a legal implication that must be divulged.

Our nation is at a crossroads where securing the homeland is of the utmost importance. As major cities grapple with rising crime and violence, calls to defund the police have left officers feeling demoralized and opting for early retirement. Having worked alongside the men and women in blue, Katko believes there is a path for sensible reforms to help law enforcement officers do their jobs without jeopardizing public safety.

Economic security is homeland security. Small and medium-sized businesses represent the most critical segments of our nation’s supply chain and are the very heartbeat of the American economy. At the onset of the pandemic, we witnessed firsthand the breakdown in our supply chain when federal, state, and local entities had to compete with one another for simple personal protective equipment. It was a terrifying glimpse into a future situation that has the potential to be mimicked on a larger, more dangerous scale. Many of our medical and critical technology supply chains are overly beholden to nation-states that don’t share our values. Building domestic resilience in these supply chains is an important homeland security mission.


Hon. John Katko is an accomplished leader in Congress, serving since 2015 as the Representative for New York’s 24th Congressional District. John was overwhelmingly reelected each cycle in one of the most competitive House districts in the country.

During his time in Congress, John developed a strong policy and communications operation, achieving significant legislative successes with 98 bills passed the House and 45 signed into law.

Early in his career in Congress, John became a strong voice on the House Homeland Security Committee. In 2020, he was selected to lead House Homeland Security Committee Republicans. As Ranking Member, John led Republican efforts to secure the border and prioritized a robust focus on cybersecurity, as well as transportation and airport security.

John has strong relationships in New York and Washington across the political spectrum. He is well-respected for his willingness to work across the aisle and has been consistently ranked among the most bipartisan members of Congress by the nonpartisan Lugar Center. As Chair of the Republican Governance Group, John was responsible for expanding political engagement with results-oriented Members of Congress.

Prior to serving in Congress, John spent nearly twenty years as a federal organized crime prosecutor with the U.S. Department of Justice, prosecuting hundreds of complex criminal cases including organized crime, drug and human trafficking, murder, and political corruption. He has extensive experience on the U.S. Northern, Southern, and Maritime borders. Additionally, he served as a litigator with the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission and as an antitrust and commercial litigation attorney in private practice.

John and his wife, Robin, live in Camillus, New York and enjoy spending time with their three adult sons.


Ryan’s palpable authenticity delivered an immediate connection when he spoke to my NYU music industry students who are trying to avoid the anxiety, depression, and addiction that comes with performing. To some, his soft-spoken words were life changing and everyone came away with the compassion and inspiration they needed to learn from his miraculous story. No psychobabble here, just humanity and caring.

Jerry Del Colliano, Professor at NYU Steinhardt

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