Laura Rauch is an American writer and national security expert who has served as the senior defense and foreign policy advisor to two U.S. Senators. She has also worked as a senior professional staffer in the U.S. House of Representatives in an oversight role on defense and intelligence issues. Prior to serving in Congress, Rauch worked globally for The Associated Press, the world’s largest news service, and for the military publication Stars and Stripes. She currently works as a defense and intelligence consultant specializing in government relations.

Rauch’s work as a journalist has taken her to more than seventy countries covering everything from U.S. presidential campaigns and the Olympics to the wars in the Middle East. She has an extensive background living and working in hostile environments and conflict zones including Bosnia, Afghanistan and Iraq, and has been embedded in numerous combat operations including conventional ground and air forces, Special Forces and NATO and paramilitary operations.

Rauch has received numerous awards for her work including the Society of Professional Journalists’ Sigma Delta Chi award for coverage in Afghanistan, the Presidents Medal from the Associated Press Managing Editors for outstanding achievement in photography during the invasion of Iraq, and First Place in Overseas Press Coverage by Military Reporters and Editors. She was awarded Editor and Publisher Magazine’s Picture of the Year for an image of an Afghan woman lifting her burqua after the fall of the Taliban government, and she and other AP photographers were named a Pulitzer Prize finalists for their coverage of the invasion of Iraq.

Rauch has trained in the martial arts for more than 25 years and holds a fourth degree Black Belt in American Karate under Grandmaster Roger Carpenter. She is also ranked in Eskrima under Suro Mike Inay and has trained in Jui Jitsu under MMA champion John Lewis.

Rauch has earned an MPA in foreign policy from Harvard University and a BS in Journalism from the University of Kansas. In 2005, she was awarded the John S. Knight Fellowship at Stanford University where she studied U.S. military history. She resides in Northern California and Washington D.C.