Current Position Is Deputy Director At FBI
President Obama's third choice to fill the top job at TSA
should have no trouble with an F.B.I. background check, since his
current position is deputy director of the F.B.I.
The President has tapped John S. Pistole (pictured,
right) as Assistant Secretary for the TSA. Pistole has held
the number 2 spot at the F.B.I. since 2004.
Prior to becoming FBI Deputy Director in 2004, Mr. Pistole
previously worked in the FBI’s Counterterrorism Division,
beginning in 2002 as Deputy Assistant Director for Operations, then
as Assistant Director for Counterterrorism, and later as Executive
Assistant Director for Counterterrorism and
Mr. Pistole began his career as a Special Agent with the FBI in
1983. He served in the Minneapolis and New York Divisions before
being promoted to a Supervisor in the Organized Crime Section at
FBI Headquarters. Mr. Pistole later served as a field supervisor of
a White-Collar Crime and Civil Rights Squad in Indianapolis,
Indiana, and then as Assistant Special Agent in Charge in Boston,
In 1999, Mr. Pistole helped lead the investigative and recovery
efforts for the Egypt Air Flight 990 crash off the coast of Rhode
Island. Following the espionage arrest of Robert Hanssen, Mr.
Pistole helped lead the Information Security Working Group in 2001,
addressing security and vulnerability issues. He was then named an
Inspector in the FBI’s Inspection Division.
Mr. Pistole is a recipient of the 2005 Presidential Rank Award
for Distinguished Executive and, in 2007, the Department of Justice
Edward H. Levy Award for Outstanding Professionalism and Exemplary
Integrity. Prior to joining the FBI, Mr. Pistole practiced law for
two years. He is a graduate of Anderson University and the Indiana
University School of Law – Indianapolis
In a statement released Monday, Secretary of Homeland Security
Janet Napolitano praised Obama's choice. “John’s
national security and counterterrorism expertise will be a great
asset to the Department in our efforts to enhance the security of
our vital transportation systems,” said Secretary Napolitano.
“Strong and effective transportation security requires
proactive measures and a strong understanding of the evolving
threat picture. John’s significant experience and expertise
in this field—which I have seen firsthand over the last 16
months—will serve both TSA and the traveling public
President Obama's first two choices for the position withdrew
during the confirmation process due to questions about past
conduct. TSA has been without a permanent director since Obama took
office 16 months ago.