U.S. intelligence community gets first female agency director

08:13, August 10, 2010      

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U.S. intelligence community on Monday got its first female head of a major agency as intelligence veteran Letitia Long took over the helm at the National Geospatial- Intelligence Agency (NGA).

Long replaced Navy Vice Adm. Robert Murrett, who served as NGA' s director since 2006. She said she is "excited by the opportunity, " and the agency will continue to build on its partnerships in the military and intelligence communities.

Defense Secretary Robert Gates presided over a ceremony at NGA' s new headquarters at Fort Belvoir, Va., praising that Letitia Long's 30 years in engineering and intelligence made her the right choice to lead the agency.

Gates chose Long, then deputy director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, in February to head NGA. He said the impact of NGA on U.S. national security is real, as it has provided a " common operating picture" for operations such as earthquake relief in Haiti and oil cleanup in the Gulf of Mexico.

For over 30 years, Long held several senior management positions including deputy director of Naval Intelligence, deputy undersecretary of defense for intelligence and most recently, deputy director at the Defense Intelligence Agency.

Women represent 38 percent of total U.S. intelligence work force. In six most prominent agencies, 27 percent of senior intelligence positions are held by women, local media quoted officials as saying.

Long is the first woman to lead one of the 16 agencies of the U. S. intelligence community.

Source: Xinhua


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