Areas of Focus:
Crisis Communications and Response
Media Relations and Stakeholder Outreach
Strategic Communications Planning and Implementation
Previous Government Service:
Deputy Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs, U.S. Department of Homeland Security (2007-2008); Previously served as Director of Strategic Communications and Spokesperson (2003-2007)
Deputy Press Secretary, The White House (2002-2003)
Deputy Press Secretary, U.S. Department of Education (2001-2002)
Katy Montgomery joins The Chertoff Group as a senior public affairs advisor focused on creating thoughtful and strategic communications plans to help clients be prepared and navigate through both anticpated challenges and unpredictable events. During her career, she has served as a strategic communications advisor and spokesperson for senior government officials at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, The White House, and U.S. Department of Education.
Duing 2003 to 2009, Ms. Montgomery served as the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), an organization with more than 215,000 employees and an annual budget of more than $50 billion. In this capacity, Ms. Montgomery provided steady communications counsel to the Secretary of Homeland Security and DHS leadership, working in a 24/7 always “on call” environment. At DHS, Ms. Montgomery worked across all components to successfully craft and implement proactive and strategic communications plans for complex programs and policies affecting both domestic and international audiences. These plans involved issues relating to immigration reform and border security, critical infrastructure protection, emergency preparedness, weapons of mass destruction and bioterrorism, cross-border travel, cyber security, among others. She successfully expanded stakeholder outreach to multiple constituencies including Members of Congress and their staff, state and local governments, industry and trade, opinion leaders, academics, national media and third-party supporters. Ms. Montgomery also served as an “on-the-record” spokesperson working with national and local reporters covering homeland security related matters and oversaw other critical public affairs responsibilities including speechwriting, internal communications, public liaison, and the Ready Campaign. Ms. Montgomery practiced crisis communications continuously involving not only the preparation and response for potential terrorist attacks but the ongoing public affairs management and response to major disasters and other emergencies.
Prior to joining DHS, Ms. Montgomery served as a White House spokesperson for USA Freedom Corps, a post-September 11, 2001 Presidential initiative designed to help Americans answer the “call to service” by helping their fellow citizens in need. In this capacity, she helped develop and implement communications planning and media strategy relating to volunteer service as well as conducting outreach to media, nonprofit, and sports organizations to promote the President’s Volunteer Service Award and President’s Council on Service and Civic Participation.
In 2001, Ms. Montgomery served as deputy press secretary to the Secretary of Education where she spoke with media “on-the-record” and worked to construct and execute successful communications plans for the department, including media strategy relating to the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 — the first legislative initiative of the new Administration resulting in historic and far-reaching education reforms to our nation’s schools.
Ms. Montgomery earned her bachelor’s degree from California State University Sacramento.