Top Intelligence Officials Name Deputies
Saturday, May 7, 2005
Director of National Intelligence John D. Negroponte has picked his key staff members and begun to design the role he and his new organization will play in managing the 15 agencies that make up the nation's intelligence community.
One visible first step was Negroponte taking over, starting last week, as the top-ranking intelligence official sitting in on President Bush's morning national security briefing, replacing CIA Director Porter J. Goss. Another was choosing to locate temporarily his headquarters and staff, which will ultimately grow to include 500 to 700 people, away from the CIA's Langley campus in two open floors of a new Defense Intelligence Agency building across the Potomac River at Bolling Air Force Base in Southeast Washington.
Negroponte and his principal deputy director, Air Force Gen. Michael V. Hayden, have decided on an organizational structure and turned to the State Department and the CIA for four of their top five aides. Negroponte's position was created last year by Congress as part of a reorganization aimed at integrating and coordinating efforts of the CIA and intelligence agencies at the Pentagon, State Department, Energy Department and the FBI.
Yesterday, officials said Thomas Fingar, head of State's Bureau of Intelligence and Research, will become Negroponte's deputy director for analysis and chairman of the National Intelligence Council. The intelligence reorganization legislation gives Fingar responsibility and authority for setting standards and coordinating objectives for U.S. intelligence efforts, although it leaves the analysts at their respective agencies with the goal of allowing them to present independent views. Fingar will also have what a senior intelligence official involved in the process described to reporters yesterday as "governance" over the President's Daily Brief, the summary of most important items given to Bush each day.
Mary Margaret Graham, a CIA clandestine officer who at one time was the agency's associate deputy director of operations for counterintelligence, will become deputy director for collection. In that job she will coordinate on a daily basis all the agencies' human, technical and open-source collection. She will also supervise tasking and when necessary determine priorities among competing demands for collection by different intelligence agencies.
Ambassador Patrick F. Kennedy, a career foreign service officer who served at the United Nations with Negroponte, will be deputy director for management. He will supervise intelligence community policies on personnel, training, acquisition and budget.
The job of chief of staff for Negroponte goes to David R. Shedd, another former CIA clandestine officer who at one time was chief of the agency's congressional liaison and since 2001 has been assigned to the National Security Council staff.
"This is an evolving process," the senior intelligence official told reporters who attended the briefing on the condition on anonymity. "We are moving from chalk to paper," he said, adding that should indicate things were far from final. The hastily drafted and approved legislation that established the DNI and his office last December represented a series of compromises between Congress and the White House. Those agreements have left room for Negroponte and his staff to establish what may be the standard structure for DNIs in the future.
"We are spending a lot of time searching for good people, and it is imperative we get the right people for these jobs," Negroponte said in a statement released yesterday. With regard to those named, he said he was "delighted that such dedicated and experienced individuals from such diverse professional backgrounds will be joining the ODNI."
The one deputy director position that remains unfilled is a novel one, described by the senior official as "customer service." This person's role is to make certain the president and his senior policymakers, along with the military and homeland security officials, are having their intelligence needs filled. Under the current DNI concept, those customers will request intelligence on subjects, which would then be passed to the DNI's analytic group, which would determine whether to assign intelligence agencies to collect new data. Until now, the CIA director was the one to field such requests, along with the CIA briefers, who would submit the questions to analysts, according to a former senior agency official.
The DNI is also setting up a 24-hour watch to keep Negroponte and Hayden informed of any sudden changes in intelligence. This office, with a handful of employees, will be located with another DNI entity, the National Counterterrorism Center, which occupies its own building in Northern Virginia.
The DNI also has its eye on CIA's Foreign Broadcast Intelligence Service, which translates daily print and broadcast material from around the world, as perhaps a building block for its new program to assemble and analyze open-source, or publicly available, material.
As currently envisioned, the senior official said, the open-source experts working for the DNI will function as a resource for analysts in all agencies.