Bruce Butterworth

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Senior Transportation Security Researcher

Bruce Butterworth has been a Senior Research Associate with the Mineta Transportation Institute (MTI) since 2005. He has taken a leading role in creating MTI’s unique database of attacks on Public Surface Transportation, and briefing TSA’s front-line bomb appraisal officers, which has been awarded by DHS. He has authored or co-authored a number of publications. Along with Brian Michael Jenkins, he co-authored nine MTI reports and eleven security perspectives, as well as two opinion pieces, one of them for the Washington Post.  He also co-authored a May 2007 study on air cargo security for the Center for American Progress.   

Mr. Butterworth had a distinguished government career working at operational, senior policy and congressional levels. For five years he was professional staff member on transportation for the House Government Operations Committee. He then spent 8 years in the Office of the Secretary of transportation, managing international negotiations on air and maritime services, chairing US delegations to UN Committees, and dealing with transportation border inspections and maritime security.

For nearly a decade, Mr. Butterworth was an executive for FAA in aviation security. For 5 years he was Director of Aviation Security Policy, establishing strategic and contingency plans, and federal rules.  Then as Director of Aviation Security Operations, he was responsible for foreign airport assessments, federal air marshals, hijacking response, and 900 field agents. He worked hard to improve security and the performance of security measures by US airports here and by US airlines everywhere. He ran the FAA’s aviation command center, successfully managing the resolution of hijackings and security emergencies. He launched a successful program of dangerous goods regulation and cargo security after the 1995 ValuJet crash, oversaw the conversion of the air marshal program to a full-time program with high standards, was a key player in the response to the ValuJet and TWA 800 accidents, and was a frequent media spokesperson. He worked closely with the Congress, the National Security Council staff, the intelligence community, law enforcement agencies, and authorities of other nations.

Following his FAA tenure, Mr. Butterworth was an Associate Director at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum responsible for security and building operations, and then a Deputy Director of Engineering at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, handling workforce and budgetary planning for complex robotics space missions and improving workplace safety.

Following his retirement after over 30 years of government service, Mr. Butterworth became a consultant and assisted DHS on information sharing, provided essential aviation expertise to the DHS Domestic Nuclear Detection Office, and was an adjunct professional staff member for the RAND Corporation.

Mr. Butterworth was awarded a Master of Science degree from the London School of Economics in 1974 and a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of the Pacific in 1972 (Magna cum Laude).  He was a California State Scholar and a Rotary Foundation Fellow. 



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