EAGLE PASS, Texas – U.S. Customs and Border Protection Eagle Pass Port Director John Brandt was formally sworn into office Aug. 4 during a CBP Office of Field Operations change of command ceremony.
Family, friends, colleagues and local dignitaries gathered as Port Director Brandt reaffirmed his oath of office during a ceremony at the International Center for Trade. The event began with the presentation of colors by the CBP Honor Guard, followed by the national anthem, pledge of allegiance and invocation.
Eagle Pass Mayor Ramsey English Cantu addressed the gathering, congratulating Brandt, followed by remarks from former Eagle Pass Port Director Cynthia O. Rodriguez, and David P. Higgerson, CBP Director of Field Operations, Laredo Field Office. The ceremony also included the passing of the Laredo Field Office guidon from Rodriguez to DFO Higgerson and then to Brandt, marking his acceptance of command. Following a reaffirmation of his oath of office, Brandt received his Port Director’s badge, pinned on by his wife, Carmen Brandt, who serves as a Supervisory CBP Officer.
A native of Pittsburgh, Port Director Brandt began his government service in 1977 with the U.S. Air Force. In 1986 he accepted a job as head of security at the Department of Justice Building in Washington, D.C. He began his career with the U.S. Customs Service in 1987 as a canine handler at the Eagle Pass Port of Entry. Subsequent promotions at the Eagle Pass Port of Entry included Supervisory Canine Handler; and Assistant Port Director, Tactical and Trade Operations. In July 2014, Brandt was named Acting Port Director of the Eagle Pass Port of Entry.
CBP Field Operations in 2008 adopted formal change of command ceremonies as a way to unify the workforce and highlight the agency mission. Since its inception in March 2003, CBP has developed and implemented standards, policies and symbols to advance the internal and external recognition of the agency and to demonstrate the strides the agency has made as the guardians of the nation’s borders. The change of command ceremony is designed to meet those goals.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between the official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.