DIA Selects New Deputy Director By DIA Public Affairs | April 06, 2016
DIA Director Lieutenant General Vincent R. Stewart announced today that Melissa Drisko will become the agency’s Deputy Director effective in August 2016.
DIA Director Lieutenant General Vincent R. Stewart announced yesterday that Melissa Drisko will become the agency’s Deputy Director effective in August 2016. Drisko currently serves as DIA’s Director for Rank-in-Person Implementation.
In announcing her selection, Stewart said Drisko is “the right choice as a partner in leading this Agency. She speaks truth to power, unbiased and unblemished – this is the mark of a true leader.” Going further, he stated that Drisko is “whole-heartedly committed to DIA and to serving our country.”
With over 35 years of federal service, Drisko brings a wealth of experience to the Deputy Directorship. She has served in a number of roles throughout out the Intelligence Community, including with the Office of Naval Intelligence, the Department of State’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research, and the Central Intelligence Agency. She joined DIA as the Deputy Chief Financial Executive in 2007. Drisko has since has served as the Deputy Director of Naval Intelligence at ONI and as DIA’s Vice Deputy Director for Collection Management/Deputy Defense Collection Manager, Chief of Staff, and the Director for Science and Technology.
As Deputy Director, Drisko will help manage the daily operation and long-term planning of the Defense Intelligence Agency. The Deputy Director leads DIA activities in a broad range of both internal and external initiatives.
Drisko graduated from the University of Virginia in 1981 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Anthropology. She was commissioned in the U.S. Navy in May 1981.
At the 9 February Worldwide Threat Assessment Hearing, DIA Director Lt. Gen. Vincent Stewart elaborated on DIA’s unique role in defending the United States of America.
“The men and women of DIA are providing unique defense intelligence around the world and around the clock to warfighters, defense planners, the defense acquisition community and policymakers to provide warning and defeat these and other threats.”
DIA welcomes Lt. Gen. Vincent Stewart as its 20th director
By DIA Public Affairs | January 23, 2015
In a ceremony presided over by the undersecretary of defense for intelligence, Marine Corps Lt. Gen. Vincent Stewart assumed directorship from Acting Director David Shedd Jan. 23 in DIA Headquarters.
Dr. Michael Vickers highlighted Stewart’s leadership acumen and noted his history as a mentor. “[Stewart] began his career as a platoon commander, so he can bring out the big guns…but he’s also one of our warrior intellectuals,” Vickers said.
Many prominent defense and intelligence leaders were in attendance to welcome Stewart and bid farewell to Shedd, including FBI Director James Comey, CIA Director John Brennan, National Security Agency Director Adm. Michael Rogers and National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency Director Robert Cardillo.
Stewart took the podium to thank his new colleagues and address the DIA workforce for the first time.
“My tenure here will not be about reversing the past or reinventing the agency or its mission,” Stewart said. “It will be about continuity and striving for excellence in our profession. … It’s about writing the next chapter, not a new book.”
“This requires a diverse and talented workforce motivated to solve problems and serve their country,” Stewart continued. “It will be my job and the job of the agency leaders to empower and lead this workforce and this is my pledge to you. In return I ask each of you, every day to bring your A-game – to innovate, challenge the status quo, speak truth to power, and do all we can do; just do it better.”
During the ceremony, Stewart was also given command of the Joint Functional Component Command for Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance by Commander of U.S. Strategic Command Adm. Cecil Haney.
“I look forward to your strategic and critical thinking [because] you are taking command at a time when our strategic environment is more volatile than perhaps at any other time in our history,” Haney said to Stewart.
Director of National Intelligence James Clapper spoke to Stewart’s successful career as a Marine and welcomed him to DIA, highlighting his reputation for getting “back to basics.”
“An intel agency organization bringing Vince aboard is a lot like your favorite football team hiring a new coach, one who’s competent with strategy and the X’s and O’s, but who puts the focus first on tackling form and blocking technique,” Clapper said.
In addition to welcoming a new director, Friday’s event was a celebration of Shedd’s distinguished career that spans more than three decades. He began his career at CIA, going on to hold increasingly senior positions at the agency and eventually serving at the Office of the Director of National Intelligence as the chief of staff, acting director of the intelligence staff, and deputy director for policy, plans and requirements. He was named acting director of DIA after serving four years as deputy director.
“Three things come to mind when you think of David,” Vickers said. “He’s been a visionary. He’s a champion of collaboration, and probably most importantly, he’s a true servant leader.”
Fellow intelligence agency directors in attendance also praised Shedd’s work throughout his career and presented Shedd with medallions and mementos, thanking him for his service.
The event concluded with Shedd offering a few remarks to his colleagues, employees, and international partners.
“My colleagues: From entry level to senior officers at DIA, you are Simon Sinek’s ‘why’ in defining DIA’s relevancy, which is now greater today than at any time in the agency’s history,” Shedd concluded. “Lt. Gen. Stewart… you have a great responsibility to ensure DIA continues this trajectory of improving intelligence collection, analysis, science and technology developments, and all the mission enabling underpinnings that define the agency’s future success.”
Marine Corps Lt. Gen. Vincent Stewart is the first Marine Corps director to lead the agency and previously served as the head of Marine Forces Cyber. (Photo by DIA Public Affairs)
Outgoing Acting Director David Shedd was honored for his distinguished career during the ceremony and received awards and mementos from his intelligence community counterparts. (Photo by DIA Public Affairs)
Marine Corps Lt. Gen. Vincent Stewart assumes directorship of the Defense Intelligence Agency in the ceremonial passing of the flag from Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence Michael Vickers Jan. 23. (Photo by DIA Public Affairs)
Lt. Gen. Flynn retires from DIA, 33-year Army career
By DIA Public Affairs | August 07, 2014
Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn retired Aug. 7 as director of the Defense Intelligence Agency and from a 33-year Army career. In a ceremony held at DIA Headquarters in Washington, D.C., nearly 500 distinguished visitors, representing more than 80 countries, joined life-long friends and family to celebrate Flynn’s career.
Adm. Michael Rogers, commander of U.S. Cyber Command and Director of the National Security Agency, presided over the ceremony, which included presentations of a number of prestigious medals and certificates.
“He’s about leading from the front. He’s about taking the hard jobs. He’s about driving change. … He’s always about the men and women around him,” Rogers said of Flynn and his career.
Director of National Intelligence James Clapper presented Flynn with both the National Intelligence Distinguished Service Medal and the Intelligence Community Seal Medallion, recognizing three decades of contributions within the intelligence community, including changes to create the force needed to confront the next generation’s challenges.
“Thank you, Mike, for all you've done for our intelligence community ... and for the tremendous legacy you're leaving in DIA's workforce,” Clapper said.
Flynn became a member of the intelligence community in 1981 when he was commissioned a second lieutenant in military intelligence upon graduation from the University of Rhode Island. Since that time, he held assignments supporting the Cold War; operations Urgent Fury, Uphold Democracy, Desert Shield, Desert Storm, Desert Thunder II, Desert Fox, Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom; and numerous other classified military operations and contingencies.
Rogers presented Flynn with the Defense Distinguished Service Medal for his exceptional job at the helm of DIA during a time of skyrocketing requirements, a shifting security landscape and reduced resources. In his own remarks, Flynn reflected on his career and the many personal and professional relationships formed throughout the years, as well as the importance of his family and the values and commitment to service instilled in him by his parents.
“My father taught me that the name soldier is the proudest name anyone can bear,” Flynn said of his late father Charles Flynn, a veteran of World War II and Korea and a retired Army sergeant first class. Additionally, Flynn discussed service to the nation, and thanked the more than 16,500 men and women of DIA around the world.
Flynn also received from Rogers the NSA Director’s Distinguished Service Medal for the close partnership during his tenure between DIA and NSA. Other recognitions presented to Flynn during the ceremony included a certificate of appreciation from President Barack Obama; a tribute written into the Congressional Record July 23, 2014, by fellow Rhode Island native Sen. Jack Reed; and letters of appreciation from the secretary of defense, the chief of staff of the Army and the vice chief of staff of the Army.
Concluding his remarks, Rogers said to Flynn, “On behalf of the men and women of DIA, of the IC and of the U.S. government, I just want to say thanks, fair winds and following seas.”
In a nod to his love of surfing and this chapter in his life, Flynn said, “Life is like surfing a wave. You can’t change the way a wave breaks, but you can certainly change the way you ride it.”
Get Ready: DIA Is Ready for a Changing World
Published on Sep 10, 2013
The Defense Intelligence Agency must understand the challenges and uncertainties of a complex operational environment. The nature and span of global threats are rapidly changing. This combat support agency's readiness level requires a global force of experts in analysis, collection, counterintelligence, and science and technology to watch the world and warn America's decision makers. Agile and able, DIA is ready for a changing world. Please see video below.
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