President Barack Obama today reappointed Gov. Terry E. Branstad co-chair of the ten-governor Council of Governors. Branstad was first named to the Council as co-chair by President Obama in March 2011. The Council of Governors was created by the National Defense Authorization Act for FY 2008 and formally established by Executive Order 13528, issued on January 11, 2010. The Council is intended to serve as a mechanism for governors and key federal officials to address matters pertaining to the National Guard, homeland defense and defense support to civil authorities.
The council is balanced by political party and serves the nation as a whole. The governors serve two-year terms and are appointed by the President. The President designates two members of different political affiliations to serve as co-chairs of the Council.
The appointment is considered an opportunity for Governors to serve at a national level. The reappointment marks a second term of service for the Governor. The federal participants in the council include – the Secretaries of Defense and Homeland Security, the President’s Homeland Security and Counterterrorism Advisor, the Commander of U.S. Northern Command and the Chief of the National Guard Bureau, among others.
Maryland Governor O’Malley was also appointed to Co-Chair with Branstad during his first term. The Council has previously taken up issues like chains of command during national security or natural disaster events. The Council is also tasked with working on Unity of Effort measures to build broad-based and cross-jurisdictional situational awareness at all levels of government.
“It has been an honor to serve as co-chairman of the Council of Governors for the past two years,” said Branstad. “I want to thank President Obama for having the confidence in me to continue serving on the Council to find effective and efficient solutions to enhance the preparedness and security of our great country. In addition, I want to thank General Orr, and his fellow Adjutants General, who have been integral in their support to help drive collaboration between the Federal government and the states”