As administrator, Pistole oversees security for travel throughout the country. The Transportation Security Administration deals with more than 1.8 million passengers per day in airports alone, "anyone of whom may be a terrorist," Pistole says. He joined TSA in 2010 after more than 25 years with the FBI, where he ended as deputy director. The two agencies have a similar national security mission, he says, adding that a key for TSA is trying to "manage expectations." The son of a pastor, Pistole, 57, grew up Anderson, Ind., receiving a bachelor's in American studies and pre-law, then a law degree from Indiana University. Pistole practiced for about two years before deciding to switch careers. He said he was drawn to "the aura … and the mystique of being an FBI officer," noting that he had a "great time" at the agency. TSA, criticized for its use of full-body scanners, announced recently that it would not use them in every airport. Pistole said the agency was in the process of moving to "maturing, risk-based security" from its one-size-fits-all system. The program would divide passengers based on potential risk and certain age groups, while trying to make the screening process more efficient.
2013 Security / Homeland Security Department
John Pistole, TSA Administrator
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