WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The Department of the Treasury has announced the appointment of W. Ralph Basham as the 21st Director of the United States Secret Service, the nation's oldest investigative federal law enforcement agency. Basham is a 28-year veteran of the Secret Service and has also served as Director of the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center and Chief of Staff at the newly created Transportation Security Administration.
"Mr. Basham has had a long and distinguished career in federal law enforcement and I am pleased that he has agreed to take on this challenging assignment," said Acting
Treasury Secretary Kenneth W. Dam.
"Ralph Basham is a dedicated public servant and a proven leader," said Homeland Security Secretary-designate Tom Ridge. "The experience he has gained in 33 years of government service will be critical in leading the Secret Service as it becomes part of the Department of Homeland Security. I look forward to working with him."
Mr. Basham returns to the Secret Service at a truly historic time. On November 25, 2002, legislation was signed into law transferring the agency from the Department of the Treasury, where it was founded in 1865, to the new Department of Homeland Security.
Both the President and the Congress have recognized the invaluable contributions the Secret Service has made to the defense of Americas homeland. The central role the
Secret Service has within the new department provides the agency with a platform to continue its excellence in protecting the nations highest elected leaders and preserving
the integrity of our financial and critical infrastructures.
"On behalf of the Secret Service, we are extremely pleased with the selection of Ralph Basham as our 21st Director," said Brian L. Stafford, the current Secret Service director. "This appointment continues the tradition of selecting a Director from within the Secret Service family. His 28 years with the agency, and subsequent experience with the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center and the Transportation Security Administration, will be essential to this agency as we transition into the new Department of Homeland Security."
Mr. Basham's career with the Secret Service began in 1970 when he was appointed as a Special Agent in the Washington Field Office. Subsequent assignments included duty in
a number of Washington, D.C. based divisions, as well as the Cleveland and Louisville Field Offices. He served as Special Agent in Charge of the Cleveland Field Office, the
Washington Field Office and the Vice Presidential Protective Division. Basham also served as the Deputy Assistant Director of the Office of Training and as Assistant
Director of the Office of Administration.
In January 1998, Mr. Basham was appointed Director of the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center (FLETC). The center, located in Glynco, Georgia and Artesia, New
Mexico, provides training for nearly all of the nation's federal law enforcement officers, including Secret Service recruits. The FLETC also serves the state, local and federal law
enforcement communities with training programs tailored to their specific needs.
Since January 2002, Mr. Basham has served as Chief of Staff for the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). Among his responsibilities at TSA, Mr. Basham
oversaw the hiring of federal security directors for the nation's 429 airports.
A native of Owensboro, Kentucky, Basham received a Bachelor's Degree from Southeastern University in Washington, D.C. He is married to the former Judith O'Bryan and has three children.
Basham succeeds Director Brian L. Stafford, who will retire on January 24, 2003.