Marc Pearl has served as the President and CEO of the Homeland Security & Defense Business Council since 2008. He leads the organization in its role as the primary voice of the Homeland Security Industrial Base – the companies whose technology, service and product solutions support the homeland security mission.
Under Marc’s leadership, the Council has developed and nurtured a reputation in facilitating numerous engagement opportunities for industry and government to build a stronger set of relationships to address our nation’s critical needs. These initiatives and programs provide access, insight and influence that encourage greater levels of communication and cooperation between the public and private sectors.
Prior to joining the Council, Marc founded IT Policy Solutions, formed to counsel private sector organizations in meeting their public policy challenges in the IT and eCommerce space, and concurrently served as the executive director of the Consumer Electronics Retailers Coalition. He had previously been a partner and led the e-commerce policy practice at the global law firm, Shaw Pittman LLP; was general counsel and senior vice president of government affairs at the Information Technology Association of America; and served as chief of staff and legislative counsel on Capitol Hill.
Marc has focused his professional work for more than 20 years in the area of how to best apply the business acumen of technology and Internet/cyber security policy issues in the public sector. His members and clients have included a wide range of Fortune 100 companies and CEO-led associations in all critical economic and infrastructure sectors. Marc has helped form and lead coalitions that served to educate public policy leaders and/or led to the passage of the Y2K millennium bug liability legislation, digital authentication laws, e-commerce transaction jurisdiction laws and the DTV “transition” rollout. He has represented the private sector on U.S. government delegations at the Hague Conference on Private International Law, the World Trade Organization and the World Intellectual Property Organization. Marc’s grasp of the federal, state/local and global policy issues important to industry, together with his non-partisan approach to policymaking have made him an invaluable resource to clients and a trusted advisor to numerous decision makers.
Marc has been interviewed, spoken at numerous domestic and international conferences, and testified before the U.S. Congress to provide the industry perspective on a number of homeland security enterprise topics that cover both the mission and the process; including acquisition reform, management efficiency, the ‘reach’ of the homeland security to and throughout federal agencies beyond the Department of Homeland Security, and private sector best practices.
Marc graduated with honors from Case Western Reserve University, and received his law degree from Emory University’s School of Law.
Krista Sweet is the Director of Policy at the Homeland Security & Defense Business Council. In this role, she is responsible for overseeing the Council’s thought leadership efforts, executive tours, strategic partnerships and major projects. She leads the planning and execution of the Council’s initiatives on acquisition reform, cybersecurity, border security & immigration reform, and the advancement of technology in homeland security. She has led and participated in efforts with DHS and other federal agencies to plan reverse industry days, industry perspective seminars, mock debriefings, mock industry bid / no bid reviews, and other workshops that focus on improving communication and engagement between government and industry during the acquisition process.
Before joining the Council in 2011, Sweet worked for the Maryland Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) and served as the Maryland State Program Manager to the National Capital Region Urban Area Security Initiative. In this role, she was the principal advisor to the Director of MEMA and the Governor’s Homeland Security Advisor on all matters involving the executive oversight and policy direction of the multi-state homeland security program for Maryland, the District of Columbia, and Virginia. She helped advise the region on how to spend millions of dollars in homeland security grant funds received annually by the Department of Homeland Security. She also served on a number of regional homeland security working groups, including the modeling and analysis group that helped develop the 2011 report entitled, “National Capital Region Key Response Planning Factors for the Aftermath of Nuclear Terrorism.”
From 2005 – 07, Sweet was a staff attorney at the Center for Health and Homeland Security and advised Maryland state agencies on legal and policy issues involved with preparing for and responding to catastrophic health emergencies. In 2006, she served as a public health legal instructor at a NATO Security Through Science Advanced Study Institute course held in Macedonia on “Strengthening Public Health Preparedness for Chemical, Biological, and Radiological Threats.” Prior to getting involved in homeland security, Sweet spent three years in private legal practice at a litigation firm in Baltimore.
Sweet received her B.A. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and her J.D., with a concentration in health law, from the University of Maryland School of Law.
Erin Walls, Director
Erin Walls is a Director at the Homeland Security & Defense Business Council. In this role, she is responsible for managing the Council’s member relations, communications, public policy initiatives, and events. Prior to joining the Council staff in 2017, Erin was the Director of the Homeland Security Advisory Council at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which provides independent advice and recommendations to the Secretary on homeland security issues. Prior to working at DHS, Erin served as the Special Assistant to the Secretary of the Interior and the Secretary of Commerce. She received her B.A. from the University of Iowa and her M.A. from Georgetown University.
Pam (Fandel) Poore is the Director of Finance for the Council. Poore does extensive behind-the-scenes work to make sure all of the finances are in order as well as handling human resources, budget management and other critical administrative tasks. Poore shares her fine organizational and managerial skills with the Technology CEO Council (TCC) and Raffetto Herman Strategic Communications, LLC, also serving as their Director of Finance. Poore has over 30 years of coalition and financial management experience.
Previously, Poore was the Vice President of Finance for E-Luminate Group Inc., office manager at the former lobbying firm Podesta Associates and an executive assistant at the law firm of Preston Gates Ellis & Rouvelas Meeds. Poore also spent two years in Harrisburg, Pa., helping to form and manage the Pennsylvania Task Force on Product Liability. She previously worked for Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., Sen. Jeremiah Denton, R-Ala., and the U.S. Department of the Interior, Fish & Wildlife Service.
She and her husband Lee own a charter fishing business on the Southwest Gulf Coast of Florida. Poore works full-time from her home in Florida so she can spend as much time outside – preferably on the beach or on a fishing boat. Poore also enjoys cheering on the Washington Redskins through the good and bad seasons, and playing with her dogs and cats.
Ben Hammond, Graduate Fellow
Ben Hammond is a Graduate Fellow for the Homeland Security and Defense Business Council. In this role, he is responsible for support and research for the rest of the Council staff. Ben is pursuing a Master’s in Security Studies from the Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service, where his work is concentrated on regional power dynamics in Eastern Europe and the Caucuses with a specific focus on the resurgence of Russian active measures and unconventional warfare. He received a Bachelor’s in International Studies with Honors from the University of Washington. Before working with the Council, he served at the U.S. Embassy in Tbilisi, Georgia and as a Police Cadet in Portland.