After helping create the Transportation Security Administration in 2001, Kip Hawley was tapped by the government to lead the organization in 2005. Through 2009, Hawley instituted new security measures and enhancements that led to measurable security improvements in the nation’s airways, highways, and railroads. Leading the department for four years, Kip Hawley is the longest-serving administrator the TSA has had.
In his time at the TSA, Kip Hawley instituted a number of innovative security measures designed not only to screen travelers for potential threats, but also to monitor airport employees in the form of screening and patrol systems. In the terminals, he developed a risk-based network strategy and a behavior detection system considered the most sophisticated in the world. Among Hawley’s more concentrated efforts were technologies and training designed to deal with explosive devices. Kip Hawley utilized open and covert bomb tests at every TSA checkpoint, hired Bomb Appraisal Officers, and modified bomb detection requirements and training; as a result, Transportation Security Officers now detect bomb components and not just fully assembled devices.
Kip Hawley’s efforts to improve performance of Transportation Security Officers did not only involve improvements to technology and protocols, but also improvements to employees’ rights and opportunities. In his time at the TSA, officers saw the development of varied career path opportunities, an open employee forum, and the creation of a skills overhaul system. Hawley’s efforts also resulted in a 75 percent reduction of on-the-job injuries and an increase in employee attendance. In addition to his own programs developed and implemented as TSA Administrator, Kip Hawley was able to modify and complete initiatives set into motion by previous Administrators. Under his leadership, the TSA expanded its K-9 programs, rail measures, and employee identification systems.
Since 2009, Kip Hawley has been a Security Consultant and Lecturer at the Naval Postgraduate School Center for Defense and Homeland Security. Hawley also maintains a fellowship with the National Academy of Public Administration and is a supporter of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.