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U.S. Sovereignty: The Border Challenges

Thu, Apr 11, 2024, 1:00pm - 4:00pm
Featuring: Mark Morgan, Visiting Fellow in the Border Security and Immigration Center at The Heritage Foundation
Location: IWP Main Campus

You are cordially invited to attend an IN-PERSON conference:

U.S. Sovereignty: The Border Challenges

with keynote speaker

 Mark Morgan

Visiting Fellow in the Border Security and Immigration Center at The Heritage Foundation


Thursday, April 11, 2024
1:00 – 4:00 PM EST


The Institute of World Politics
1521 16th St NW
Washington, DC 20036Commodore Barry Room – Marlatt MansionGetting to campus




12:45 – 1:00pm: Registration and Coffee

1:00pm: Opening remarks from Dr. Marek Chodakiewicz

1:10 – 1:40pm: S. Marshall Wilson – The Border: At the Heart of America and Q&A

1:45 – 2:15pm: Hon. Matthew O’Brien – How Lax Border Policies Undermine the Sovereignty and National Security of the United States and Q&A

2:20 – 2:35pm: Break

2:40 – 3:10pm: Col. Sergio de la Peña – Border: Politico-Military Perspective and Q&A

3:15 – 3:50pm: Mark Morgan – Vulnerabilities of an Unsecure Border and Q&A

4:00pm: Conference concludes

About the Conference

U.S. Sovereignty: The Border Challenges is a conference focused on the subject of the U.S. southern border and national security policy implications. Sponsored by the The Institute of World Politics, this conference will feature distinguished speakers who will discuss the current border situation, with topics including:

  • How Lax Border Policies Undermine the Sovereignty and National Security of the United States
  • The Border: At the Heart of America
  • Border: Politico-Military Perspective

Confirmed Speakers

Mark Morgan, a seasoned law enforcement professional with over 30 years of experience, joined The Heritage Foundation as a Visiting Fellow in February 2021, following his tenure as Acting Commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) in the Trump administration. At Heritage, Morgan focuses on border, immigration, and public safety policies, along with asylum and China-related issues. Prior to his current role, Morgan led CBP, overseeing 60,000 employees and managing a budget exceeding $13 billion, ensuring the agency’s mission to safeguard national security while fostering economic prosperity. With a diverse background, Morgan served in various capacities within the FBI, including crisis management, gang task force supervision, and counterterrorism efforts in Iraq. He also served in the U.S. Marine Corps and held positions in local law enforcement. Morgan holds a Bachelor of Science in Engineering from Central Missouri State University and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

S. Marshall Wilson (’20) is a husband to a valiant woman, a dad to nine, a retired combat veteran US Army Infantry Officer, a former Christian missionary in the Peruvian Amazon, and a teacher. He served as a Delegate from south Berkeley County for two terms (2016-2020) and stood for election as Governor of West Virginia in 2020. Marshall earned an Executive Master of Arts in National Security Affairs from the Institute of World Politics in Washington, DC and teaches in the ‘Military Operations’ Master of Arts program at Liberty University. He is currently the 2024 Constitution Party candidate for Governor for West Virginians.

Hon. Matthew O’Brien (’18) serves as Director of Investigations at the Immigration Reform Law Institute and is responsible for overseeing IRLI’s investigations into fraud, waste, abuse and other misconduct in the application and enforcement of America’s immigration laws. Mr. O’Brien has nearly 30 years of experience in immigration law and policy. Prior to joining IRLI, he was an Immigration Judge, sitting on the U.S. Immigration Court at Arlington, VA. From 2016 to 2020, he served as the director of research at the Federation for American Immigration Reform. From 2008 to 2016, he held a number of positions at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security including Assistant Chief Counsel with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Senior Advisor to the Citizenship and Immigration Services Ombudsman, and Chief of the National Security Division at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. From 1997 to 2003, he was an immigration attorney in private practice, in Boston and New York. From 1996 to 1997, he served as a District Adjudications Officer with the former Immigration and Naturalization Service. He holds a Juris Doctor from the University of Maine School of Law, a Master of Arts in National Security Affairs from the Institute of World Politics (IWP) and a Bachelor of Arts in French from the Johns Hopkins University.

Col. Sergio de la Peña is a retired U.S. Army officer and boasts a distinguished 30-year career spanning various leadership roles in defense and international affairs. As former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Western Hemisphere Affairs, he oversaw crucial security and policy matters while managing defense cooperation programs for U.S. Northern Command and U.S. Southern Command. Prior to this, Col. de la Peña served as U.S. Northern Command’s Chief of the International Affairs Division and Commander of the U.S. Military Observer Group-Washington, deploying personnel to U.N. missions worldwide. With a background in air defense, he strengthened military ties as U.S. Army Section Chief in Chile and as Army Attaché in Venezuela. Born in Chihuahua, Mexico, and raised in New Mexico, de la Peña holds a B.S. in psychology from the University of Iowa and a Master of Military Art and Science degree from the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College. He also attended the Inter-American Defense College, graduating with distinction.

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