DHS Chief of Staff announces she will be resigning at the end of the month to “pursue new opportunities”

A top official at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced on Monday that she would be leaving the department at the end of this month, according to a report.

Karen Olick, chief of staff to Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, “has decided to resign her position and pursue new opportunities,” Mayorkas told DHS officials in an email obtained by Politico. “We are grateful to Karen for her service during the critical first nine months of the new Administration,” he added.

In a separate email, Olick praised her soon-to-be-former colleagues, writing: “Though too often underappreciated by our fellow citizens, I am continually struck by how many millions of Americans sleep in safety every night because so many at DHS do not sleep.”

Jennifer Higgins, the current associate director of Refugee, Asylum and International Operations at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, will step in as a temporary chief of staff until a new appointment is made, according to officials in the department.

During the busy time for the department, one career DHS official said that some DHS career employees have been not happy that career people with critical security positions have had to go into the office while some senior political appointees in the front office haven’t gone in that much.

“It’s impacted morale and caused tension that the political people are setting rules and the rules don’t always apply to them,” the official said. A DHS spokesperson said that the agency is still operating on “maximum telework flexibility to all” guidance from the Office of Management and Budget and the Office of Personnel Management.




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Paul, 37, is from Scotland in the UK, but currently lives and works in Bangkok. Paul has worked in different industries such as telemarketing, retail, hospitality, farming, insurance, and teaching, where he works now. He teaches at an all-girls High School in Bangkok. “It’s a lot of work, but I love my job.” Paul has an active interest in politics. His reason for writing for FBA is to offer people the facts and allow them to make up their own minds. Whilst he believes opinion columns have their place, it is also important that people can have accurate news with no bias.

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