Susan Brooks

Susan Brooks


Video ICYMI: Congresswoman Brooks Stands for Hoosier Farmers


Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks (R-IN5) took to the House Floor recently in support of Hoosier farmers facing increased hardships because of the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed “Waters of the U.S.” rule:  "Mr. Speaker, I rise today to express my opposition to the EPA’s proposed ‘Waters of the U.S.’ rule. This rule will dramatically expand the Clean Water Act’s jurisdiction by changing current law that limits EPA authority to ‘navigable waters.’ Under this new rule, EPA authority will apply to any body of water that has a bed, a bank or a high water mark. Hoosier farmers explained to me that this new rule means large puddles, left after a storm, will fall under the EPA’s jurisdiction. Farmers may have to get a permit to perform even the most basic tasks on their own land. My constituents brought me these photos to show what changing the rule will mean. As you can see, this is not a stream… It’s not a navigable body of water or a long standing body of water… It should not be regulated by the EPA. It happened just after a large rain fall.  Mr. Speaker, this rule change will prevent farmers from doing their jobs, put people out of work and increase food prices. It’s bad for our nation’s landowners, it’s bad for our nation’s farmers and it’s bad for Americans trying to put an affordable meal on the table. Mr. Speaker, I ask the EPA to withdraw this rule and I yield back.”   Click here for video. To learn more about Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks, click here.         Read More

Brooks Statement on 9/11 Commission Tenth Anniversary Report


Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks (R-IN5) released the following statement after today’s Committee on Homeland Security hearing on the 9/11 Commission Tenth Anniversary Report: “Ten years after the 9/11 Commission Report was issued, there is still significant work to do. As the original Commission members made clear in their follow up report, a sense of complacency is setting in that will have negative consequences if it deters from counterterrorism efforts.  We live in a dangerous world where increasing global instability directly threatens the safety and security of the American public. Today’s testimony underscores the need to remain vigilant, and one way of doing so is to finally address unfulfilled recommendations made in the original 9/11 report. I echo Chairman McCaul’s focus on a more effective Congressional oversight process for the Department of Homeland Security. Moreover, I share his concern with the reemergence of terrorism safe-havens abroad in places like Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan.  I was particularly pleased that both witnesses reaffirmed the importance of addressing the bioterrorism threat our nation faces. The consequences of a bioterrorism attack are potentially so severe that we must be proactive in preparing for and deterring this threat. I was also encouraged to hear both witnesses clearly state that first responder communications interoperability must be a priority. Ensuring first responders can communicate with one another before, during and after emergencies is central to keeping people safe when lives are on the line.”   Testimony was provided by: The Honorable Thomas H. Kean Jr., Co-Chair, Homeland Security Project, Bipartisan Policy Center and Former Chair, National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States. The Honorable Jamie S. Gorelick, Former Commissioner, National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States – in place of former Indiana Congressman and National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States Vice Chair Lee Hamilton. To see video of the Congresswoman questioning witnesses, click here. To read the report, click here. Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks is a member of the Committee on Homeland Security and Chairman of the Subcommittee on Emergency Preparedness, Response and Communications. Read More

Brooks & Polis Applaud Passage of STEM Education Act


Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks (R-IN) and Congressman Jared Polis (D-CO) released the following statement after the passage of the STEM Education Act in the United States House of Representatives: “We’re pleased the House of Representatives has recognized the importance of computer science by passing the STEM Education Act. The bipartisan support for this bill shows broad agreement that preparing students for in-demand careers is a top priority. We’re hopeful our colleagues will go one step further by passing the Computer Science Education Act, which will increase access to computer science opportunities for students in classrooms across America. There will be 1.4 million computing jobs in 2020, and we must give all students a chance to excel in this exciting, high-paying field and earn the jobs of tomorrow.” The STEM Education Act broadens the definition of STEM subjects to include relevant fields like computer science and expand programs at the National Science Foundation to support informal STEM education activities. The Computer Science Education Act was introduced by Brooks and Polis in June of 2013, and changes the definition of a core academic subject to include computer science. Doing so gives local school leaders increased flexibility to purchase technology, support teacher professional development and offer AP classes. For more information on the Computer Science Education Act, click here. To learn more about Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks, please visit:  Read More

Brooks: SKILLS Act will Help Fill America’s 4.6 Million Open Jobs


Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks (R-IN5) hailed passage of the SKILLS Act in the U.S. House of Representatives today, vital legislation that will put Americans back to work by reforming the nation’s historically inefficient workforce training system. The bill creates a streamlined and flexible workforce training system that will connect more Americans with the skills needed for in-demand jobs. “There are 4.6 million open jobs in this nation and yet almost every month more people stop looking for a job than find one,” Brooks said. “To solve our skills gap we must increase access to quality in-demand job training for all Americans. This legislation is the most significant reform of our federal workforce training system in over a decade and represents a strong bipartisan and bicameral effort.” Under the current workforce training system, a federal formula awards dollars to states to provide workforce training. The states then distribute their federal dollars to local workforce investment boards.  These local boards administer One-Stop Delivery Centers and match workers with training programs. However, the systems efficiency is hindered by needless federal mandates and overlapping programs that stand in the way of local efforts. The SKILLS act solves these problems by eliminating more than a dozen ineffective and often duplicative federal programs and provides for more efficiencies within our training system. For example, “core services” and “intensive services” are combined to form a new category called “career services.” The cumbersome “sequence of services” process that job seekers must currently navigate to access training is also phased out. In addition, the SKILLS Act provides states greater flexibility to determine the standards for eligible training providers. Many burdensome requirements that currently exist have forced community colleges and other quality providers out of the system. The bill corrects this problem. The bill also includes an amendment offered by Congresswoman Brooks allowing local workforce investment boards to reserve a portion of their statewide employment and training funds to implement “pay-for-success” models. These models will financially reward programs meeting and exceeding rigorous performance benchmarks so that they can expand program capacity. “When it comes to job training, we have to make smarter investments,” Brooks said. “Our local workforce investment boards know which programs are working and which ones aren’t. They should have the freedom to reward and support the best programs that make a real difference in the lives of the unemployed and underemployed.”  The SKILLS Act was first passed by House in March of 2013. After bicameral and bipartisan negotiations, an amended version of the SKILLS Act – also known as the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act – was passed by the Senate in June of 2014. The House passed this amended version of the SKILLS Act today and the legislation now heads to the President’s desk for signature. To read the Congresswoman’s op-ed on the SKILLS Act and upward mobility, click here. To learn more about the SKILLS Act, click here.  About Congresswoman Brooks Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks serves on the Education and the Workforce, Homeland Security and Ethics Committees. She is a former Deputy Mayor of Indianapolis and former U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Indiana. Prior to serving in Congress, she was the Senior Vice President and General Counsel for Ivy Tech Community College where she led statewide workforce development and job training efforts. She was also appointed by former Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels to serve on the State Workforce Innovation Council.  Read More

Brooks Social Media Bill Passed by House


Legislation introduced by Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks (R-IN5) – the Social Media Working Group Act of 2014 – was passed by the U.S. House of Representatives today. By expanding the membership and influence of the Department of Homeland Security’s Virtual Social Media Working Group, the bill gives the private sector new opportunities to drive social media innovation in emergency preparedness and response. This is the third piece of legislation introduced by Congresswoman Brooks that has been passed by the U.S. House of Representatives during her freshman term.  “Social media has dramatically changed the way we communicate with each other and using it the right way can save lives when disaster strikes,” Brooks said. “This bill strengthens the Department of Homeland Security's Virtual Social Media Working Group and gives private sector innovators new opportunities to share their expertise and ideas. This is the product of more than a year of witness testimony, background research and committee outreach indicating a need for greater collaboration between the high-tech industry, non-profit organizations and federal, state and local emergency response providers. This bipartisan legislation requires the working group to file a yearly report with Congress demonstrating new strategies for using cutting edge tools to keep people safe.”   The Virtual Social Media Working Group has held meetings since 2010. By requiring the group to file a yearly report with Congress, the legislation ensures members of the U.S. House and U.S. Senate have an opportunity to review findings and address areas of need. It will also ensure local officials receive more information on using social media to effectively disseminate critical information. The legislation expands the diversity of voices providing expertise and offering solutions to policy makers. In addition to the current chair of the working group – the DHS Under Secretary for Science and Technology – the new working group will be co-chaired by a state or local official. The bill also requires members of the working group to come from outside of government. This will include representatives of the private sector, non-profit disaster relief organizations and academia. The updated working group is required to hold its first meeting within 90 days of the enactment of the legislation. Its yearly report must address several factors including best practices, recommendations for improving the use of social media and information sharing, and a review of the training available on using social media. Congresswoman Brooks held her first hearing on social media and emergency preparedness and response in June of 2013. Representatives from leading tech voices such as Google, Palantir, and the Internet Association provided expert witness testimony. Learn more about this hearing here.  Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks is a former U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Indiana and Deputy Mayor of Indianapolis where she focused on public safety issues. To read her emergency preparedness and response op-ed in Social Media Monthly, click here. To learn more about the Subcommittee on Emergency Preparedness, Response and Communications, click here.  Read More

Lawmakers look for answers to Indiana heroin crisis


NOBLESVILLE — Heroin is a worsening problem in Central Indiana, law enforcement authorities and lawmakers said during a meeting Tuesday that discussed ways to combat the issue. "This is not just a big city problem," said U.S. Rep. Susan Brooks, R-Carmel. "This is not just a suburban problem or a rural problem." Click here to read the Indy Star's full story.  Read More

Brooks & Walorski visit Roudebush Medical Center


Congresswoman Brooks joined fellow Hoosier Congresswoman Jackie Walorski for a tour of the Roudebush VA Medical Center on Tuesday, July 1. Click here to watch WISH TV's coverage.   Read More

Brooks & Merritt to Host Heroin Crisis Listening Session


Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks (R-IN5) and State Senator Jim Merritt (R-Indianapolis) will host a listening session – “Understanding the Heroin Crisis in Indiana” – at the Noblesville City Hall at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, July 1, 2014. The event will bring together local, state and federal law enforcement officials to discuss efforts to stop the spread of heroin in Indiana’s communities. Recent data suggests heroin remains a serious problem for the state, with increased use among younger adults proving to be particularly concerning. Members of the media wishing to attend should contact Alex Damron via or 202-226-5377. WHO: Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks               State Senator Jim Merritt WHAT: Listening Session – “Understanding the Heroin Crisis in Indiana” WHEN: Tuesday, July 1 at 10 a.m. WHERE: Noblesville City Hall                  16 South 10th Street                  Noblesville, IN 46060   Read More

Congressional Hearing Focuses on Indy 500 Security


If you feel safe when you go to the Indianapolis 500, you need to know that the planning to keep race fans secure is nonstop.  Some of that planning is now being shared with others and Congress is playing a role. Indiana Congresswoman Susan Brooks (R-5th District) conducted a field hearing Monday in New Jersey to examine the security at major events including the 500.  One of the things that came out is that tighter security measures are on the way. The 300,000 or so race fans who come to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in May are being watched on video cameras.  This year, for the first time, the federal government helped out with extra cameras and helicopters according to testimony given by Speedway President Doug Boles. “We had 8 Homeland Security folks from Chicago that actually came down, helped us run our event,” said Boles.  “It turned out to be a seamless relationship.” “One of the keys to success,” said Rep. Brooks, “is thorough planning and coordination.” This hearing is part of an effort to help the Department of Homeland Security get along better with state and local officials.  The goal is stop terrorist acts like the Boston Marathon bombing. The Super Bowl is of prime concern and, again, Indianapolis is an example. “We attended the Super Bowl both in Indy and the prior one in New Orleans,” said New Jersey State Police Lt. Col. Edward Cetnar. He was one of the people in charge of security at the most recent Super Bowl in New Jersey and they based their plans, in part, on what happened here. “And as you know it was very successful,” said Cetnar, “because there was no disruption to the Super Bowl.” But future events could produce new risks.  A Rutgers University researcher testified that it may soon be possible to hack into a car’s computer and turn it into a weapon. He got the attention of Doug Boles.  “His testimony alone,” said Boles, “gives me some great pause to start thinking about things we need to be prepared for.” And Boles said that sometime soon 500 fans may be asked to pass through magnetometers. Starting next year magnatometers will be employed at Major League baseball games according to one witness. And here’s another thought that may be unsettling.  The subcommitee was told that as major league events become more secure, terrorist may set their sights on the minor leagues.   Read More

Brooks to Chair Field Hearing on Super Bowl, Indy 500 and Large Scale Event Security


Brooks to Chair Field Hearing on Super Bowl, Indy 500 and Large Scale Event Security   Panels Will Feature Witnesses from the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, NFL, DHS, New Jersey State Police, NYNJPA, MetLife Stadium and Rutgers University On Monday, June 23, Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks (R-IN5) and Congressman Donald M. Payne, Jr. (NJ-10), as Chair and Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, Subcommittee on Emergency Preparedness, Response, and Communications, will host a field hearing entitled: “Mass Gathering Security: A Look at the Coordinated Approach to Super Bowl XLVIII in New Jersey and Other Large Scale Events.”  The Subcommittee will meet at 10:00 a.m. in the atrium at the New Jersey Institute of Technology, 150 Bleeker Street, Newark, New Jersey. "Each year, hundreds of thousands of spectators attend mass gathering events across our country and around the world,” Brooks said. “Given the ever-present threats we face from acts of terrorism and other emergencies, each event requires a coordinated approach to security planning that incorporates law enforcement and emergency response providers at all levels of government.  This hearing will examine the security considerations and planning necessary for a successful and secure mass gathering event through the lens of Super Bowl XLVIII and the Indianapolis 500."     Indianapolis Motor Speedway President, Doug Boles, will testify before the subcommittee. A live stream of the hearing will be available on  WHO:            Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks (IN-5), Chairwoman                          Congressman Donald M. Payne, Jr. (NJ-10), Ranking Member WITNESSES: Doug Boles                           President, Indianapolis Motor Speedway                                                  Special Agent in Charge Andrew McClees                           Federal Coordinating Officer, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, DHS                                                  Chief Louis Koumoutsos                           Chief of Port Authority Police, Port Authority of New York/New Jersey                                                    Lt. Col. Edward Cetnar                            New Jersey State Police                                                    Mr. Dan Grossi,                            Director of Event Security, National Football League                                                   Daniel DeLorenzi                            Director of Safety and Security Services, MetLife Stadium                                                   Dr. Fred Roberts                            Director, Department of Homeland Security Center of Excellence CCICADA at Rutgers WHAT:             Committee on Homeland Security, Subcommittee on Emergency Preparedness,   Response,  and  Communications, Field Hearing:  “Mass Gathering Security:  A Look at the Coordinated Approach to Super Bowl XLVIII in New Jersey and Other Large Scale Events.” WHEN:             Monday, June 23, 2014 @ 10 a.m. WHERE:            New Jersey Institute of Technology                              Atrium at 150 Bleeker Street                              Newark, New Jersey 07102 To learn more about Congresswoman Brooks, please visit  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.

Serving With

Jackie Walorski


Marlin Stutzman


Todd Rokita


Luke Messer


Larry Bucshon


Todd Young


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