Richard Ades:

A specialist in high stakes communications, message development and writing, Richard was the Chief of Communications and Public Affairs for the highly visible and eternally challenged Transportation Security Administration (TSA) of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

Focused on high-stakes communications and campaigns in challenging environments for companies, organizations and individuals, Richard provides candid and actionable counsel for clients in the areas of public policy, issues management, crisis communications, litigation communications and in support of government relations.  

Richard specializes in crisis preparedness and response, message development, media relations, media preparedness, writing, spokesperson training, reputation and positioning, executive communications and risk mitigation in tailoring strategic communications plans in support of specific goals identified by clients.

A versatile and innovative big picture thinker, he helps clients anticipate challenges and see around corners. He has steered clients through many difficult situations involving crisis events, advocacy groups, Congressional investigations and national media exposure (Network and Cable News, 60 minutes, 20/20, New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, LA Times, among many others)

Security Clearance: TS/SCI

Vice Admiral Peter Neffenger​, USCG (ret)  


Peter Neffenger was appointed in 2015 by President Obama to head the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), a

position he held until January 2017. Prior to this he enjoyed a distinguished and high profile career in the US Coast Guard, most recently serving as the 29th Vice Commandant, and, as a recognized expert in crisis management, as the Deputy National Incident Commander during the 2010 Deepwater Horizon BP oil spill, the largest and most complex in US history. When he took the helm of the embattled TSA, the agency’s challenges were substantial and numerous. His subsequent transformation of the entire organization earned the TSA widespread recognition as the turnaround agency of the year and led to his being named one of the 25 most influential business travel executives of 2016 by Business Travel News.


He holds an MPA from Harvard University, an MA in National Security and Strategic Studies from the US Naval War College, an MA in Business Management from Central Michigan University, and a BA from Baldwin Wallace University, from where he recently received an honorary Doctorate (Doctor of Public Service). He is a two-time recipient of the Department of Homeland Security’s Distinguished Service Medal and is a Distinguished Fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Adrienne Arsht Center for Resilience, a Distinguished Senior Fellow at the University of Pennsylvania’s Fels Institute of Government and a Distinguished Senior Fellow at the Northeastern University Global Resilience Institute.

Security Clearance: TS/SCI

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