Real-world communications and government relations strategy for real-world crises
In times of crisis, your name, your brand, your organization, and most importantly, your reputation are all on the line. You need the trusted expertise of those who have lived it before to help navigate the rough waters ahead.
Samuel “Sam” Schumach is a communications, government relations, and national security executive with more than a decade of experience advising senior presidential administration officials, U.S. Senate leadership, corporate executives, agency directors, and cabinet secretaries on matters of policy, national security, congressional affairs, and communications. Sam has developed and executed tactical legislative affairs plans and communications strategies during major government crises, and has prepared, advised, and accompanied multiple senior officials for congressional oversight hearings, briefings, and testimony—including guiding numerous presidential nominees through grueling U.S. Senate confirmation processes.
Originally from Las Vegas, Nevada, Sam is bilingual—speaking fluent Spanish—and is an 11-year veteran of the United States Air Force. As an enlisted Air Force member, Sam deployed numerous times in support of Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom as a flying crew chief on C-130 aircraft during his active duty service. As an Air Force reservist, Sam served as a crew chief on the F-15 Eagle. Sam currently serves as an Officer in the U.S. Navy Reserve. He received his commission through the Navy’s highly competitive Direct Commission Officer program.
Sam has a bachelor's degree in Political Science from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and a master's degree in Global Security Studies from The Johns Hopkins University.
When he is not working, Sam is an avid aviator as an FAA-licensed private and unmanned aircraft systems pilot. He also enjoys going on hikes with his dog Rocky, international travel, aerial cinematography, and cooking. Sam also serves as a volunteer officer in the Civil Air Patrol (U.S. Air Force Auxiliary) as a pilot, public affairs officer, and leader in the cadet program at his local squadron. He is a Political Partner in the Truman National Security Project, and a member of the Army Navy and National Press Clubs in Washington, DC.
After being notified about the breach on his first day at the Office of Personnel Management, within a matter of days, Sam and his team managed and coordinated the federal government's public response to the largest government data breach in history. Working with legal counsel and experts across government, Sam developed coordinated responses and proactive messaging to prepare Cabinet Secretaries, Senior Administration Officials, and members of the Intelligence Community to testify before Congress, and speak to the media on-record, all while balancing national security concerns and government transparency that the public expects and deserves.
In the press
Storage of Records of Background Checks Shifted After Last Year’s Security Breach
The New York Times
“This is primarily about recognizing the evolving threats and national security importance of the background investigation systems and data,” said Samuel J. Schumach, the personnel agency’s press secretary. He said that Defense Department investigations accounted for more than 70 percent of the background checks, so it made sense for its experts to take over the storage system."
“Utilizing what D.O.D. can provide — a large and trained cybersecurity work force to protect against and respond to cyberintrusions, and a strong focus on national security — is the right step to take,” Mr. Schumach said.
Since the revelations last year of the data theft, the personnel agency has rushed to bolster the security of its information. Mr. Schumach said it had moved to put in place “real-time monitoring” of its computer systems, installed controls to bar unknown devices from logging on to its network, and enforced “two-factor authentication” for gaining access to the network — a basic measure that had been lacking on many government systems.