The Hon. Thomas J. Ridge
Co-Founder & Executive Chairman
The Hon. Thomas J. Ridge is the Co-Founder & Executive Chairman of RIDGE-LANE LP, where he oversees the firm’s management, international business, and government affairs.
Governor Ridge became the first Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and on January 24, 2003 was appointed first Secretary, U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Secretary Ridge oversaw 180,000 employees across 22 federal agencies that facilitated the flow of people and goods, instituted layered security at air, land and seaports, developed a unified national response and recovery plan, protected critical infrastructure, integrated new technology and improved information sharing worldwide.
He has an undergraduate degree from Harvard University, with honors. After his first year at Penn State University's Dickinson School of Law, he was drafted into the U.S. Army, where he served as an infantry staff sergeant in Vietnam, earning the Bronze Star for Valor, the Combat Infantry Badge and the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry. After returning to Pennsylvania, he earned his law degree and went on to became one of the first Vietnam combat veterans elected to the U.S. House of Representatives, where he served six terms.
Tom was twice elected Governor of Pennsylvania, serving from 1995 to 2001. Governor Ridge's aggressive technology strategy helped fuel the state's advances in economic development, education, health care and the environment. He serves on the boards of the Institute for Defense Analyses, the Center for the Study of the Presidency and Congress and other private and public entities. He is Chairman of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's National Security Task Force.