Susan Brooks

Susan Brooks


Brooks Hosts Hoosier Roundtable on Ebola Preparedness


Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks (R-IN5) and newly appointed Indiana State Health Commissioner Jerome Adams, M.D., joined Hoosier state, local and medical leaders today for a roundtable discussion on Indiana’s preparedness for the Ebola virus. The 90 minute session gave attendees the opportunity to discuss precautions and procedures already in place and provide their input on the federal response and how federal government agencies can be most helpful to them as they train and prepare. “Today’s gathering provided a vital opportunity for key stakeholders to discuss coordinated efforts to protect Hoosiers from this serious public health threat,” Brooks said. “If Indiana is confronted with a case of Ebola, it’s important for federal, state, local and medical officials to be on the same page and ready to respond with a cohesive plan of action. As a member of the Committee on Homeland Security, I also wanted to provide Hoosier leaders an opportunity to share their thoughts on the guidance and assistance being provided by federal agencies.” “The State Health Department, along with federal and local officials, has been working around the clock to ensure that Indiana is prepared to effectively respond to a case of Ebola in Indiana, should we have one,” said Indiana State Health Commissioner Jerome Adams, M.D. “As we demonstrated with the first North American case of MERS-CoV earlier this year, Indiana has excellent public health infrastructure and communication channels in place to effectively treat and contain emerging diseases, including Ebola.” Last week, Congresswoman Brooks called upon the CDC to add individuals exposed to the Ebola virus to the Do Not Board list administered by the TSA. To see her letter to CDC Director Tom Frieden, click here. She also joined several House Committee on Homeland Security colleagues in requesting the temporary suspension of visas of individuals from high risk countries until the outbreak is under control within these countries. To read the full text of this letter to Secretary of State John Kerry and Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, click here.   Read More

Rep. Susan Brooks calls for travel restrictions for people exposed to Ebola


WASHINGTON – The federal government should be doing more to prevent people who have been exposed to the Ebola virus from getting on an airplane, Rep. Susan Brooks said Thursday. Click here to read more. Read More

Indiana Lawmakers Offer Prayer and Support for Hoosier Taken by ISIL


Indiana lawmakers Friday offered words of support and prayer for the family of Peter Kassig, who was named as the next victim for beheading by the terrorist group known as ISIL. Click here to read more. Read More

Reps. Brooks and Hudson Urge CDC to Update ‘Do Not Board’ List


WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Reps. Susan Brooks (R-IN), Chairman of the Emergency Preparedness, Response and Communications Subcommittee, and Richard Hudson (R-NC), Chairman of the Transportation Security Subcommittee, released the following statements after urging the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to place individuals who have been exposed to the Ebola virus on the Do Not Board list enforced by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) for a minimum of 21 days: “This step is necessary to protect the health of the American people,” said Brooks. “We cannot allow individuals who may have been exposed to the Ebola virus to compromise the safety of airline passengers or the general public. While I am confident in our ability to manage this significant public health challenge, it’s extremely vital that the CDC and other government agencies take smart and decisive steps to limit potential risks.”  "It is important that everyone remain calm and understand that the risk of an Ebola outbreak in this country remains extremely low,” said Hudson. “That being said, it is absolutely critical that we examine our protocols and utilize every layer of security to protect public health and prevent a tragic situation from becoming worse. In light of the Dallas health care worker’s ability to board a commercial flight while being monitored for signs of infection, I am urging the CDC to temporarily restrict the travel of all individuals being monitored or under quarantine." The Do Not Board list should include any health care worker assigned to the treatment of an Ebola patient, or other person being monitored as a result of possible exposure. To learn more, click here to read the letter to CDC Director Tom Frieden. Yesterday, Congresswoman Brooks and several House Homeland Security Committee colleagues called on the Administration to temporarily suspend the visas of individuals from Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone until the outbreak of the Ebola virus is under control within these countries.  To read the full text of this letter to Secretary of State John Kerry and Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, click here.  Read More

Brooks: GROW Nurses Connects Careers with Classrooms


Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks (R-IN5) issued the following statement after speaking today to students, faculty and community partners who support and participate in Grant County’s GROW Nurses program: “GROW Nurses is a 5th District program doing an outstanding job of connecting careers with our classrooms. The program is dedicated to building a healthier Grant County through community partnerships that encourage more young people to become nurses. I am particularly pleased to know GROW Nurses is working to provide more males and minorities the step by step support necessary to enter the nursing profession. As the baby boomer generation continues to age, we will need a new generation of diverse and well-trained nurses ready to meet increased demand.  GROW Nurses breaks down silos between our local schools, career and technical education programs and universities. It gives students access to the tools and information they need to find the career paths they want. Moreover, it provides quality training and learning opportunities for students before they even enter high school. In Grant County, more young people are pursuing degrees and beginning careers in health care because of this program.  As a member of Congress focused on workforce training issues, I’m committed to supporting and highlighting 5th District programs that make such a positive impact in the lives of our students.” Today’s GROW Nurses event was held at Marion Community School’s Tucker Career and Technology Center. GROW Nurses was started in 2008 with grant funding from the United States Department of Energy. Indiana Wesleyan University is the program’s lead sponsor in partnership with organizations like Ivy Tech Community College and Marion Community Schools. For more information on GROW Nurses, please visit:  Read More

Brooks Statement on ISIL Hostage, Hoosier Native


Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks (R-IN5) released the following statement regarding the news of ISIL hostage, Abdul-Rahman (formerly known as Peter) Kassig:  "I join all Hoosiers and all Americans in praying for the safe return of Abdul-Rahman (formerly known as Peter) Kassig. As a mother, my heart also goes out to the parents and friends of this Indiana native. This is an excruciatingly difficult time for them and it is vitally important that we respect their privacy in the days ahead and continue praying for the Kassig family.” Read More

Brooks: Threats to Security Require Action


Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks (R-IN5) released the following statement after voting in favor of a Continuing Resolution (CR) that funds the government and supports efforts to defeat ISIL: “America faces growing threats to our security and stability that require action. Doing nothing to confront these threats is not an option. That’s why passage of today’s Continuing Resolution was so important. It keeps the government open, preserves the spending cuts negotiated by Paul Ryan and supports critical efforts to begin defeating the barbaric terrorist regime ISIL.    ISIL controls territory larger than the state of Indiana, has vast financial resources and recruits fighters from Western nations. ISIL poses a security risk to the United States that must be overcome. That’s why I voted in favor of an amendment to the Continuing Resolution authorizing the United States government to supply vital equipment and training to appropriately vetted Syrian rebels. President Obama has not adequately outlined a cohesive and comprehensive plan for dealing with this threat. So I’m encouraged this amendment also includes measures requiring the President to be transparent with Congress and the American people about the success of our efforts and the development of a real strategic plan for dealing with the rise of ISIL. One of the most important steps he must take is securing a broad coalition of nations to contribute to this effort. This is a goal that must be accomplished sooner rather than later, and most certainly before the Continuing Resolution sunsets on December 11.” The amendment to the CR authorizes the U.S. government to provide training, equipment, supplies and sustainment to vetted elements of the Syrian opposition. It requires the President to submit a report to Congress describing how the assistance fits within a larger regional strategy and also requires the Department of Defense to submit a report to Congress at least 15 days before providing assistance as well as a progress report every 90 days. The amendment is not an authorization for the use of military force. The Continuing Resolution funds the government through December 11, 2014 at the levels agreed upon in the Ryan-Murray budget deal. It specifically sets aside funds to assist veterans currently backlogged in the VA hospital system and to enhance Customs and Border Protection efforts. The CR passed with bipartisan support by a vote of 319-108. Read More

Susan Brooks: Remember 9/11, stay alert for new threats


Like all Hoosiers, I have clear memories of Sept. 11, 2001. I picked up my kids from school — they were 8 and 11 at the time — and did my best to answer their questions and explain what had taken place. My thoughts also drifted back to the beginning of the summer, when Indianapolis hosted the World Police and Fire Games. Thousands of first responders from across the globe brought the Circle City to life with spirited and good-natured athletic competition. Many of them were from New York City who would sadly lose their lives on 9/11. Today, as our nation grieves the 9/11 victims and commemorates our heroic first responders, one thing must remain steadfast: our commitment to protecting our homeland from further terrorist attacks. Doing so requires us not only to tackle threats posed by other nations and networks of radicals, but also to face an internal threat: complacency. As the distance between that tragic day and the present continues to widen, we can’t lose sight of the lessons we’ve learned. Members of the 9/11 Commission, including vice chair and former Indiana congressman Lee Hamilton, made this point clearly in a recent report on ongoing and emerging security threats. They called our evolving security challenges “very real and very dangerous” and expressed concern that our “waning sense of urgency will divert attention and needed resources from counterterrorism efforts.” Meeting growing domestic and foreign threats requires us to push away complacency and instead pursue a cohesive and comprehensive strategy for keeping ourselves and our loved ones safe. It also requires us to be responsible as individual citizens by notifying the appropriate authorities if we become concerned about suspicious behavior or out-of-place objects. As a nation, we must continue to improve our most vital counterterrorism efforts. I was sworn in as U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Indiana just one month after 9/11, and I worked closely with law enforcement officials to set up the programs and task forces that work to keep communities safe from terrorism. These efforts have been successful on many levels, but they are not perfect and must be constantly refined. Congress must hold our various law enforcement agencies accountable for communicating clearly with one another and ensuring threats do not slip through the cracks as was the case with the Boston Marathon bombings. We must also provide more efficient oversight of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which was established after 9/11 with the purpose of preventing future terrorist attacks. Right now, DHS reports to more than 100 congressional committees and subcommittees. One of the primary 9/11 Commission recommendations was a more effective oversight process for DHS. Congress rarely reforms itself, but as a House Homeland Security Committee member, I am committed to making this recommendation a reality. The United States also needs a sufficient strategy for confronting the rise of ISIS, a barbaric and expansionist terrorist regime responsible for the slaughter of thousands of men, women and children and the gruesome murders of two American journalists. ISIS controls a territory within the Middle East roughly the size of Great Britain, has vast financial resources at its disposal and uses social media to recruit fighters from Western countries. It’s extremely concerning that recruits from our nation may be able to use their U.S. passports to return to our communities. Defeating ISIS is critical to our security interests and we must act upon a smart and decisive plan to do so. Everyone has memories of where they were and whom they were with on Sept. 11, 2001. As we reflect on those memories and mourn the lives lost, I encourage us as a country to recommit ourselves to preventing another attack on our nation. Being forever mindful of the pain and heartbreak we experienced that day will honor the men and women who played one summer at the Indianapolis World Police and Fire Games, only to lose their precious lives at the hands of terror three months later. Brooks is a U.S. congresswoman representing Indiana’s 5th District. Read More

Rep. Brooks Holds Mental Health Roundtable


CARMEL – Rep. Susan Brooks met with dozens of mental-health professionals Thursday to get input on a proposed House bill that would bring sweeping changes to the nation’s mental-health system. The Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act proposes changes to the nation’s mental health system by focusing programs and resources on psychiatric care for patients and families most in need of services.   The 135-page document was written and sponsored by Pennsylvania Rep. Tim Murphy, who worked for three decades as a psychologist. Brooks, a co-sponsor of the bill, said the proposed legislation would bring major changes to how the mentally ill and their families receive treatment. The bill proposes increasing access to inpatient psychiatric care, clarifying privacy rules for families of the mentally ill and promoting alternatives to long-term inpatient care, such as court-ordered assisted outpatient treatment. “It’s an important document, and it’s the first time the mental-health system has been given this much attention in a very, very long time,” she said Thursday. Psychiatrists, social workers, professors and officials with mental-health agencies from across the state met with Brooks to discuss the bill and pinpoint how the federal government can streamline its mental health programs and services. Brooks said Congress likely won’t vote on the bill this year because of the November elections. Brooks is the U.S. representative for Indiana’s 5th district, which includes Greentown and Tipton. Carson Gerber can be reached at 765-854-6739, or on Twitter @carsongerber1. Read More

Brooks Holds Health Initiative Panel


Congresswoman Susan Brooks (R-IN5) co-hosted a listening session Aug. 7 on the 21st Century Cures initiative with the Indiana Health Industry Forum, BioCrossroads, Hoosiers for Health, and the Indiana Medical Device Manufactures Council at Roche Diagnostics. The 21st Century Cures initiative is led by the U.S. House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Committee. This new initiative looks to find ways to accelerate medical breakthroughs by taking a comprehensive look at three key points – discovery, development and delivery. The goal is to close the gap between the science of creating new cures and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulatory policies that slow the process. The committee is holding hearings and meetings to find solutions – with the idea that no idea is too small to discuss. After Roche Diagnostics Corporation Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Wayne Burris opened the meeting, Brooks began with an overview of the importance of the initiative to those constituents she represents in her eight-county district. “The life science sector is critical to our state and to our country, quite frankly. The average wage in the life science sector is $89,000 while the average (yearly) wage is in the private sector is $41,000,” said Brooks. “But life science is not just about giving people jobs, but also about making people healthier, or helping with health needs not in just this country but abroad.” The 17-member roundtable panel included representatives from Indiana-based medical device manufacturing companies, research and development corporations, and patient advocacy groups. “As a new member of congress, I’m concerned about what we are seeing with respect to policies that are possibly diminishing our place as a leader in life sciences in the world,” said Brooks. Brooks asked two questions to open the discussion: How can government help and how can government change what is hindering the development of cures? Brooks will take input she received at the listening session back to the committee in Washington, D.C. Acknowledging that regulatory policies are hindering discovery and delivery, she reassured the panel that Congress is listening. Read More

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Contact Information

1505 Longworth HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Phone 202-225-2276
Fax 202-225-0016

Congresswoman Susan Brooks represents the 5th District of Indiana, which spans eight diverse counties throughout the central part of the Hoosier State. As a new member of Congress, she currently serves on the Education and Workforce, Homeland Security and Ethics Committees. She is also the Chairwoman of the Subcommittee on Emergency Preparedness, Response and Communications.

Her strong background in both the public and private sectors includes experience as a proven difference maker in areas such as public safety, homeland security, counter-terrorism and economic development.

Before joining the House of Representatives, Susan served as Senior Vice President and General Counsel for Ivy Tech Community College. Collaborating with a wide network or stakeholders, she implemented workforce development strategies aiming to enhance job training and placement for thousands of Hoosier residents.

In 2001, President George W. Bush appointed Susan as U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Indiana. Serving as the chief federal law enforcement officer for a majority of the Hoosier state, she received bi-partisan acclaim for efforts to battle mortgage fraud, gun violence, drug trafficking, gangs, child exploitation and identity theft.

Susan also earned recognition as Deputy Mayor of Indianapolis during the Steve Goldsmith administration, where she provided oversight on public safety operations and drove community dialogue on vital civic issues. Over her tenure, she managed police, fire and emergency response efforts while serving on boards related to criminal justice, community corrections, violence reduction and race relations.

Susan practiced law at the Indianapolis firm of Ice Miller and also served as a criminal defense attorney for Indianapolis based McClure, McClure and Kammen.

After receiving her undergraduate degree from Miami University of Ohio, Susan pursued a Juris Doctor (J.D.) from the Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law. In May of 2013, Susan was awarded an honorary Doctor of Public Service degree from Marian University in Indianapolis. She resides in Carmel, Indiana with her husband David and they have two young adult children.

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