Central Intelligence Agency
George J. Tenet
Tenet, a longtime national security expert, is described by friends as a passionate and personable man who is nearly impossible not to like. The proof seems to be in the pudding: A Clinton appointee-he served on Clinton's first-term transition team-he is said by White House aides to get along well with Bush, who has made no effort to replace him. Tenet, 48, is a New York native who grew up in Queens and went to Georgetown University for his undergraduate degree and Columbia University for a master's in international affairs. Before signing on with Clinton, he served as staff director of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence under David C. Boren, D-Okla. While on the committee staff, Tenet was responsible for directing the committee's oversight of arms negotiations between the United States and the Soviet Union. He had started on Capitol Hill with stints in the Senate offices of Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., and John Heinz, R-Pa. In the Clinton Administration, Tenet was the senior director for intelligence programs at the National Security Council. He left the NSC to join the CIA as deputy director in 1995. He was elevated the following year after the departure of John M. Deutch, who had taken the job as a consolation prize when he didn't get the Defense Secretary post. Tenet's outgoing personality and upbeat attitude are in sharp contrast to the stereotype of the taciturn career spook. He exults in the job of director of central intelligence-and he's evangelistic about the idea of loving what you do for a living. "Follow your heart and dare to take risks," he advised a group of high school seniors recently. "Unless you wake each day with a passion to excel in your work, you will be miserable."
John E. McLaughlin
McLaughlin is a CIA lifer who, because the agency is technically attached to the White House, has the distinction of having worked for Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and George W. Bush. His CIA career began in 1972 and has included stints in the Directorate of Intelligence, the State Department, and the National Intelligence Council. A native of western Pennsylvania, McLaughlin attended Wittenberg University and the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies before spending a year on the staff of then-Sen. Joseph Clark, D-Pa. As an Army infantry officer, he served in Vietnam in 1968 and 1969. At the CIA, McLaughlin founded the Sherman Kent School to teach agency recruits the historical mission and essential skills of analysis. Quiet and professorial, McLaughlin, 57, is an adept, if unlikely, amateur magician. "He's the last guy you would assume would do this," says CIA spokesman William R. Harlow. "He spoke at Thomas Jefferson High School in Virginia, and at the end of his talk, ripped a newspaper into little pieces and then put it back together. He brought the house down."
Joan Avalyn Dempsey
Deputy Director for Community Management
Dempsey is the charter appointee in a government post created by the 1997 Intelligence Authorization Act. Part of Tenet's portfolio is overseeing the intelligence services outside of the CIA, including the National Security Agency and the Defense Intelligence Agency; Dempsey is the deputy who handles that responsibility. Before being confirmed in 1998, she served as Tenet's chief of staff. Before joining the CIA in 1997, Dempsey had worked at the Pentagon in a variety of posts. Dempsey, 45, was born in San Diego and raised in Arkansas. She attended Southern Arkansas University and earned a master's degree in public administration at the University of Arkansas. She began her public service career as an enlisted woman in the U.S. Navy. In the ensuing years, Dempsey has won several awards for her management skills, including American University's Roger W. Jones Award for Executive Leadership. She is currently a lieutenant commander in the U.S. Naval Reserve.
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