Brian Goebel

Former Distinguished Fellow

This is the profile of a former staff member, affiliate, intern, or guest author. Biographical information is not maintained and may be out of date.

Brian Goebel is a Distinguished Fellow at the Stimson Center. He is also the President of Reason in Government as well as President of 2040 Matters, LLC.  He is the Founder of Sentinel Holdings, LLC, and currently serves on its Board.

Prior to joining Stimson, Goebel pursued a career in law, public service, and consulting.  He began his career with Jones, Day, Reavis and Pogue, served as a Law Clerk to the Honorable Fortunato P. Benavides on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, and served as an Of Counsel with Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, where he focused on administrative law and sanctions compliance.

Between 2001 and 2004, Goebel served as the Counselor and Senior Policy Advisor to Commissioner Robert C. Bonner, U.S. Customs and Border Protection. While with the Office of the Commissioner, Goebel advised Commissioner Bonner on a variety of border management and border security policies and programs, oversaw critical rulemaking efforts and the implementation of portions of the Smart Border Declaration with Canada, and led negotiations with the European Commission on matters relating to the Container Security Initiative.

In 2005, Goebel founded The Sentinel HS Group, LLC, a homeland security consulting firm that provided strategic and other consulting services to the public and private sectors in the U.S. and abroad. Over the course of a decade, Goebel grew The Sentinel HS Group into multiple separate businesses, ultimately organized under a holding company, Sentinel Holdings, where Goebel currently serves on the Board.

Goebel attended the College of William and Mary, where he graduated with High Honors in 1993 with a B.A. in Government and Philosophy, and William and Mary Law School, where he served as an Articles Editor on the Law Review and graduated Order of the Coif with a J.D. in 1996.


Brian C. Goebel, “Where is the Debate on Homeland Security?”, Wash. Times, September 4, 2004.

Seth M.M. Stodder & Brian C. Goebel, “Crossing Guard”, The New Republic Online, March 28, 2006.

Brian C. Goebel, Josh Kussman, and James Jay Carafano, Ph. D., “Coming to America:  Initiatives for Better, Faster, and More Secure Visas”, The Heritage Foundation, September 29, 2006.

Brian C. Goebel, “Take Steps Toward Real Port Security”, Journal of Commerce, March 22, 2006.

Josh Kussman and Brian C. Goebel, “Taking the Fight to the Cartels”, Wash. Post, April 4, 2009.

Brian C. Goebel, and Brian Finlay, “It’s Time for the UN Security Council to Lead on Border Management”, The National Interest, Sept. 25, 2015.

Brian C. Goebel, “Angry Voters Beware”, Santa Barbara News Press, March 13, 2016.

Brian C. Goebel, “The revolution will be livestreamed”, Orange County Register, May 6, 2016.

Research & Writing

Stimson in the News
Brian Finlay and Brian Goebel Op-ed on Qualities of Next Department of Homeland Security Leader

Lost in the generally positive commentary on retired Marine Corps Gen. John F. Kelly’s appointment as White House chief of staff has been the vacancy his appointment has left in his former job as secretary of the Department of Homeland Security. This v…

Stimson in the News
Brian Goebel’s Op-ed in CNN on Foreign Terrorist Fighters

(CNN)President-elect Donald Trump has indicated that preventing terrorist attacks is one of his top national security priorities. In pursuit of this goal, retired Gen. John Kelly, the nominee to lead the Department of Homeland Security, and other…

Brian Goebel Joins Stimson Center as Distinguished Fellow

The Stimson Center announced today that Brian Goebel has joined the Center as a Distinguished Fellow. Goebel’s work will examine the intersection of border security, trade, and counter-terrorism policy. “It’s a privilege to welcome Brian Goebel to Stim…

Choose Your Subscription Topics
* indicates required
I'm interested in...
38 North: News and Analysis on North Korea
South Asian Voices