Jim Kuiken, a former Border Patrol Agent, Homeland Security executive and combat Marine has officially formed an exploratory committee for U.S. Congress in Texas District 15.

“For more than 30 years, I have served my country in the military and by working on issues such as border and homeland security,” Kuiken said. “People from across District 15 have asked me to answer a call to duty once again and join the front lines of government reform as a candidate for United States Congress.”

Kuiken’s unique service to our country as a combat veteran, former law enforcement agent and public service executive has prepared him to be a strong, focused and principled leader in almost any situation. He is a small business owner and lives in Weslaco.

He said he formed the exploratory committee to determine the kind of support available in a race for U.S. Congress in District 15. Under a redistricting plan passed by the Texas Legislature and under review in the courts, District 15 stretches from Hidalgo County in the south to Guadalupe County. It also includes a portion of Wilson County, Karnes, Live Oak, Duval, Jim Hogg and Brooks counties.

Kuiken’s career accomplishments will serve him well in the U.S. Congress. While still serving in the reserves, he had a distinguished and highly successful career in law enforcement and public service – starting in state and local law enforcement before he became a U.S. Border Patrol Agent. After serving on the front lines on our southern border, he was promoted to Special Agent and served in Los Angeles, working gangs, international fugitives, organized crime, and counter-terrorism.

A 30-year veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps, Kuiken received the Legion of Merit, the Purple Heart and numerous other awards before retiring in 2003. He is a highly decorated combat veteran of several campaigns and finished his military career as Sergeant Major for Marine Forces Pacific, the senior combatant command in the Marine Corps that included over 79,000 Marines and sailors.

As an employee of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Kuiken rose in the ranks from a border patrol agent to acting Assistant Director for the Office of Detention and Removal Operations. He also served with ICE as the Director for the National Incident Response Unit (NIRU) which oversees the bureau’s efforts to deal with terrorist attacks, natural disasters, or other large scale or national emergencies; and he represented ICE on the DHS Interagency Incident Management Group, which was instrumental in developing Courses of Action to advise the Secretary and President on responses to incidents of national significance.

Kuiken has also served as Attaché for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security in Iraq where he oversaw all homeland security personnel and efforts to promote a stable and free country.

The exploratory committee has created the website at “www.KuikenForTexas.com”, where his bio, and connections to the Facebook, Twitter, and various other sites can be found.