Richard “Dick” Cañas is the former Director of the New Jersey Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness (2006-2010), and member of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Homeland Security Advisory Council (2008-2013). He is currently the President/Chairman of Betts Global Consulting, LLC, a homeland and international security consulting firm.
Cañas has had an impressive and diverse national security career, from managing programs for a private consulting firm with the National Security Agency and the National Guard Bureau, to a 26 year career with the U. S. Department of Justice where he served as Director of the National Drug Intelligence Center and a Special Agent with the Drug Enforcement Administration, (DEA). With DEA he served in various domestic and foreign posts including 12 years in Latin America, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Phoenix Divisional Office, Special Advisor to the Central Intelligence Agency, and Director for Counterterrorism and Counternarcotics at the White House's National Security Council. The latter assignment covered a four-year period under both President George H.W. Bush and President William J. Clinton.
Prior to DEA, Cañas was a police officer and detective for eight years with the Salinas, California Police Department.
A graduate of California State University at San Jose, Cañas has a teaching credential in Police Science and is a sought-after lecturer and instructor on Criminal Justice and Homeland Security both in the U.S. and most recently in Mexico and the United Arab Emirates. He has self-published three books including a text on State Homeland Security and numerous articles on related subjects.