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Rafael Borras, Undersecretary, Management Rafael Borras, Undersecretary, Management

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2013 Security / Homeland Security Department

Rafael Borras, Undersecretary, Management

July 16, 2013

Borras has known the direction he has wanted to go—government—since he listened to the Miami city manager speak at his high school's career day. Now, after being named as a recess appointee in 2010 and confirmed in 2011, Borras handles the Homeland Security Department's almost $60 billion budget. Helping to adjust the budget in the wake of the sequester is the biggest challenge for him and the department, he says. His focus includes reducing costs and managing risks by making sure officials are "good stewards" of the money DHS receives. Borras credits the department with making strides from three years ago, when its records were too messy to be audited. He made the move to DHS after 10 years in the private sector. "It was not an economic decision," he says, adding that he's always thought of himself as a public servant. But he thinks his experience is useful. DHS "can't become more like a business," he says, "but we can become more businesslike." Borras, 55, has held a number of local and federal government jobs, including stints at the Commerce Department and the General Services Administration, but he credits the Metropolitan Dade County government as the place where he found his "spark." Borras, who grew up in the same New York City neighborhood as Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, has a bachelor's degree in political science from Florida International University.

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