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Rick Dearborn

Senior Fellow for BPC's Campus Free Expression

Headshot of Rick Dearborn

Rick Dearborn is a senior fellow for BPC’s Campus Free Expression Project. For the past thirty years Dearborn has served two U.S. Presidents, six U.S. Senators, a premier think tank and a major trade association on Capitol Hill. He is currently a partner at The Cypress Group.

From January of 2017 until mid-March of 2018, Mr. Dearborn served The President of the United States as his Deputy Chief of Staff. Mr. Dearborn was responsible for the day-to-day operations of ~100 staff in five separate Executive Office of the President (EOP) departments

Three days after the 2016 election, President-Elect Trump tapped Vice President-elect Mike Pence to serve as Chairman of the Presidential Transition Team and asked Mr. Dearborn to serve as the Executive Director. Daily responsibility included the direction and management of the core components of the Transition Team’s 600+ members.

Prior to leading the President’s Transition team, Mr. Dearborn had served for twelve years from 2005 until January of 2017 as Chief of Staff to then U.S. Senator Jeff Sessions.

He served Senator Sessions for a total of eighteen and a half years having been originally hired as the Senator’s Legislative Director in 1997.

In 2003, between serving as Senator Sessions’ Legislative Director and Chief of Staff, Mr. Dearborn was nominated by President George W. Bush and confirmed by the U.S. Senate to become the Assistant Secretary of Energy for Congressional Affairs, where he worked with the Senate, House and Tribal Governments on the President’s Energy agenda.

Prior employment has included working at the National Republican Senatorial Committee for Sens. Rudy Boschwitz and Don Nickles, The Heritage Foundation, where he was Director of Congressional Relations, and lobbying for the American Medical Association. He has served in Senate Leadership Offices as well, for Senators Trent Lott and Bob Kasten on the Senate Republican Conference, and Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison as Executive Director of the Senate Steering Committee.

Mr. Dearborn graduated from the University of Oklahoma in 1988. He and his wife, Gina split their time between homes in Alexandria, VA and Birmingham, AL.