As a Senior Executive Leader with more than 34 years of Federal service, John Santo has led several programs at the Department of Homeland Security; playing a key role in building and integrating new technology programs at Customs and Border Protection (CBP). Having worked in several offices and having led multiple Level I (over $1B) program offices, he gained extensive executive experience in Secure Mission-Critical Communications Technology, , Border & Port Security Technology, Information Technology, Communications Security, Law Enforcement and Investigative Technologies.
As the Executive Director for Enterprise Networks and Technology Support, Mr. Santo was responsible for stewarding the successful design and implementation of the DHS Enterprise IT Network (DHS OneNet). As the Interim Executive Program Director for the high-visibility DHS Secure Border Initiative (SBInet), Mr. Santo successfully led a re-plan of the ailing program established to deploy an array of sophisticated communications and border security technology systems as part of an overarching strategy to better secure the U.S. Borders. After approximately 1 year, Mr. Santo was able to restore confidence in the program with the Commissioner, Secretary, OMB and the Hill and in 2009 received the President’s Meritorious Executive Rank Award. Moving on from SBInet Mr. Santo developed a DHS vision and established an enterprise Joint Wireless Program Office chartered to develop next-generation solutions for converging multi-billion dollar mission-critical communications systems with future tactical grade mobile broadband solutions, to deliver mission critical voice, video and data services meeting today’s emerging public safety mission requirements. Other accomplishments include establishing and leading law enforcement technical operations (TECHOPS), covert surveillance electronics program, and leading the consolidation of multiple radio communication centers to form the DHS National Law Enforcement Communications Center (NLECC) in Orlando Florida.
Mr. Santo holds a B.S. degree from the State University of New York and a M.S. degree from Troy State University. He completed Senior Executive Fellows Programs at Columbia University (Executive MBA equivalent) and Harvard University. He holds a Project Management Professional (PMP) Certification and a DHS Level III Program Manager Certification. He received the President’s Senior Executive Rank Award, the Secretary of Treasury Albert Gallatin Award, The FCC Chairman Award and the Government Executive Technology Achievement Award.
Vision hn Santo Jr. Background
Combining his background in law enforcement, information technology, and acquisition program management, In 2008 John Santo developed a vision for transforming Federal mission-critical wireless communications that was modeled after the rapidly growing global commercial mobility industry. Mr. Santo took his vision and gained support from front line operational users and from the most senior DHS leadership. He founded the DHS Joint Wireless Program which in addition to DHS components is formally supported by the Department of Justice and the Department of Defense. Having done speaking engagements at several large public safety and industry venues, Mr. Santo has built a solid reputation and gained a broad understanding of the needs and concerns of Federal, State and local communications professionals. His views are also well known by a broad segment of the LMR, Integrator and telecommunications Industry. He has taken his vision to the White House, the Congress, the FCC and the NTIA. Since retiring from his Federal Service career, he remains passionate about the revolutionary change ahead that will truly transform public safety operations over the next decade. He remains committed to his vision for delivering the optimum solutions to benefit public safety and the American public.