Mr. Coldebella was the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s acting General Counsel from February 2007 to January 2009, and its Deputy General Counsel from October 2005 to February 2007, focusing on all of the major homeland security issues confronting the Department and the nation. As DHS’s top lawyer for two years, he reported directly to Secretary Chertoff, oversaw DHS’s responses to congressional oversight, spearheaded development of regulations, interacted with members of Congress and their staffs, worked on security-related issues with the White House and other executive branch agencies, managed the department’s varied litigation portfolio, supervised the over 1,700 lawyers at DHS and its components (including the Coast Guard, USCIS, CBP, FEMA, ICE, the Secret Service and TSA) and restructured the legal function to better meet the Department’s needs. He held a TS/SCI clearance. Mr. Coldebella was awarded the Secretary’s Outstanding Service Medal and the U.S. Coast Guard Distinguished Public Service Award for his work at DHS.
In 1997, Mr. Coldebella served as a prosecutor in the Middlesex County, Massachusetts District Attorney's office, where he conducted numerous jury trials.
Mr. Coldebella is on the advisory board of the NYU Law School’s Center on Law and Security. He is a senior fellow at the George Washington University Homeland Security Policy Institute (HSPI) and serves on its Counterterrorism Intelligence Task Force. Mr. Coldebella is a member of the Intelligence and National Security Alliance (INSA), the Federalist Society and the American Bar Association.
Mr. Coldebella formerly served as president of the Colgate University Alumni Corporation, the organization that represents Colgate’s 32,000 alumni, and is now a member of Colgate’s Board of Trustees, and serves as the chair of its audit committee and the vice-chair of its legal affairs and insurance committee.