Posted at 03:15 PM ET, 05/04/2011

Audrey Tomason: Who is the Situation Room mystery woman?

President Obama, members of the national security team and one mystery woman receive an update on the mission against Osama bin Laden in the Situation Room of the White House. (By Pete Souza/White House via Reuters)
How many people do you recognize in this photo of the Situation Room? Most people in this now-famous photograph, showing President Obama and his national security team getting updates on the mission that killed Osama bin Laden, are recognizable public figures. Except for one: the brunette peaking from between the shoulders of Tony Blinken, national security adviser to the vice president, and counterterrorism adviser John Brennan.

According to the White House’s caption of the photo, her name is Audrey Tomason and she holds the title “Director for Counterterrorism.” But even with her name and title, there isn’t a lot of information on Tomason available. While some on the Internet used a thread to try and find out more about Tomason, a Daily Beast reporter asked the White House press office for details:

“An official said she worked with the National Security Council, a White House agency closely involved with the intelligence that led to bin Laden. The official intimated that the White House generally doesn't discuss personnel at any of the government's covert or intelligence agencies. Tommy Vietor, a spokesman for the NSC, confirmed that she worked with the agency. When asked why she had never been identified or mentioned before, Vietor responded, ‘Well, we’ve never killed bin Laden before.’ ”

If it’s true that Tomason’s job is of the clandestine nature, it’s reasonable to think that this photo will not be good for her career. Neither will her new Wikipedia page.

By  |  03:15 PM ET, 05/04/2011

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