Dennis Blair, President Barack Obama’s national intelligence director, confirmed media reports Thursday evening that he is resigning after 16 months on the job.
The retired Navy admiral is the third director of national intelligence. The position was created in response public outrage over the failure to prevent the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, The Associated Press reported. His tenure was marked by concerns over intelligence failures and turf wars among the country’s spy agencies.
Here is a message delivered to his work force:
STATEMENT FROM DIRECTOR DENNIS C. BLAIR TO THE ODNI AND INTELLIGENCE COMMUNITY WORKFORCE
It is with deep regret that I informed the President today that I will step down as Director of National Intelligence effective Friday, May 28th.
I have had no greater honor or pleasure than to lead the remarkably talented and patriotic men and women of the Intelligence Community.
Every day, you have worked tirelessly to provide intelligence support for two wars and to prevent an attack on our homeland.
You are true heroes, just like the members of the Armed Forces, firefighters, and police whose job it is to keep our nation safe.
Your work over the past 16 months has made the Intelligence Community more integrated, agile, and representative of American values. Keep it up – I will be cheering for you.
Dennis C. Blair