On September 17, 2001, the United States Attorney General issued an anti-terrorism directive that tasked each United States Attorney with coordinating operations of the Anti-Terrorism Task Force (later renamed the Anti-Terrorism Advisory Council (ATAC)) within each district. The responsibilities of the United States Attorney and the ATAC Coordinator in each United States Attorneys Office include the following:
- convening and establishing the agenda for council meetings
- ensuring that the participating federal, state, and local agencies work in a coordinated fashion and freely share information
- developing a consensus among council members about investigative and prosecutive priorities and strategy
- collaborating with the Counter Terrorism Section Regional Coordinators about priorities and strategy
- ensuring that the member agencies maintain a long-term focus on anti-terrorism.
Regarding the core operational aspects of terrorism investigations, the ATACs work in partnership with the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Forces who retain primary responsibility for terrorism investigations, continuing to coordinate among FBI field offices and their respective counterparts in federal, state, and local law enforcement and intelligence agencies in conducting international and domestic investigations.
Members of the ATAC in the Southern District of Illinois include the following private, local, state, and federal organizations.