A few professions are seen through the public eye as male-dominated, but there are still some ‘amazons’ who have managed to emerge at the very top as bosses in such occupations. One of such women is U.S CIA boss, Gina Haspel, who emerged as the first female to hold the post of the Director of the Central Intelligence Agency on a permanent basis. Prior to her appointment, she served as Deputy Director of the agency under the leadership of Mike Pompeo at the commencement of the administration of Donald Trump who made the announcement that Mike Pompeo was taking over from Rex Tillerson (former secretary of state), paving the way for Pompeo’s second in command – Gina Haspel to assume his position, pending the confirmation of the Senate for both Pompeo and Gina.
However, Gina has put in over thirty years in the United States Intelligence and most of her service years were spent in overseas posts working undercover. It would not be wrong to say that she is best known for the controversial role she played in Thailand where she served as the head of a secret prison under the CIA. Gina oversaw secret Intelligent American Officers who handled the job of torturing prisoners who were suspected to have a link with Al Qaeda. A far-reaching report came from the Senate Intelligence Committee, detailing the events that took place in the Thailand prison and the people involved. The prison site came into existence as a global effort by the administration of George Bush to battle terrorism following the 9/11 terrorist attacks. However, the site’s use of what has been described as “enhanced interrogation techniques” has given rise to a lot of condemnation from human rights groups, as well as critics who tagged it “torture”.
According to the executive director of the Center for Constitutional Rights, Vincent Warren who work directly with people who have faced torture at the hands of the CIA, “Gina Haspel should be prosecuted not promoted.” Despite all the controversies that were raked up, Gina’s appointment was confirmed on the 17th of May, 2018, giving her pride of place in history as the foremost female permanent Director of the CIA, she was equally the 2nd female director of the Agency. Gina Haspelvwas officially sworn into office on the 21st of May 2018. She is the recipient of a few prestigious awards which include; George H. W. Bush Award for excellence in matters of counterterrorism, Presidential Rank Award, as well as the Donovan Award for the Intelligence Medal of Merit.
Gina Haspel’s biography has never been published in details because of her involvement in a protracted under cover career. But titbits of information infiltrates into the media from time to time. It has been established that she was born as Gina Cherri Walker in Ashland, Kentucky on the 1st of October 1956. Not much is known about the identity of her parents and siblings but it is on record that her dad served in the U.S Air Force and she is the oldest out of five children who spent their formative years in the United States Air Force bases overseas.
Talking about her educational qualifications, she went to high school in the U.K and proceeded to the University of Kentucky where she put in three years but moved over to the University of Louisville during her senior year where she bagged a BS degree in languages and journalism, graduating in May 1978. She was at Fort Devens in Massachusetts from 1980 to 1981 working as a civilian library coordinator. In 1982, Gina earned a paralegal certificate from Northeastern University and commenced work as a unit before she got a job with the Central Intelligence Agency and was drafted to the Counterterrorism Center of the CIA, her first day at work was on the 11th of September 2001. Before then, she was at Fort Devens in Massachusetts as a contractor with the 10th Special Forces Group.
Family Life, Is She Married, Who Is Her Husband?
There is also a dearth of information on her marital life and relationship status but it is common knowledge that she tied the nuptials with Jeff Haspel in 1976. Jeff was with the US army at that time and their marriage endured for barely nine years before it came to an end in a divorce which was finalized in 1985. Her profession has made it almost impossible to get ahold of information concerning her family life but it is a known fact that she presently resides in Ashburn, Virginia. Gina Haspel is averse to using the social media and so is not on any internet platform.