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Susan M. Gordon

Susan M. Gordon American Intelligence Officer

American Intelligence Officer
Susan M. Gordon
The basics

Quick Facts

Intro American Intelligence Officer
A.K.A. Sue Gordon
Is Intelligence officer Manager
From United States of America
Type Business Law Military
Gender female
The details


Susan M. Gordon is an American Intelligence Officer. In the years 2017-2019, she served as Principal Deputy Director of National Intelligence. Earlier, she was the Federal Executive at Central Intelligence Agency


Gordon attended Duke University, Durham, North Carolina, and graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Zoology/Biomechanics in 1980. While at the university, she played basketball and was the captain of the university's Blue Devils women's basketball team, for three years.


After finishing her education at Duke University, Gordon joined the Central Intelligence Agency in 1980, working as an analyst in the Office of Scientific and Weapons Research, Directorate of Intelligence. In the following years, she worked her way up the ranks and ultimately served in various management positions before becoming leader in the CIA's Directorate of Science and Technology.


In July 1996, she became the director of the Office of Advanced Analytic Tools (AAT), and served in the position until October 2000.

In 1998, Gordon became Special Assistant to the Director of the Central Intelligence Agency and was responsible for designing and implementing In-Q-Tel, a private nonprofit company with the primary purpose of delivering innovative technology solutions for the intelligence community.


In 2015, she became the Deputy Director of National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA,) working with the director in providing geospatial intelligence to the intelligence community, the Department of Defense, and the President. Additionally, she also served as Director of the CIA's Information Operations Center and as the CIA Director's senior advisor on cyber issues.

On 7 August 7 2017, Gordon was sworn in as the fifth Principal Deputy Director of National Intelligence (PDDNI,) the role in which she assisted the DNI in leading the Intelligence Community (IC) and managing the ODNI, with focus on advancing intelligence integration across the Intelligence Community.

Resignation from the agency

On 8 August 2019, she resigned from the position in a letter to President Donald Trump, leaving the office a week after, on 15 August. 

A week before, on 28 July 2019, Director of National Intelligence, Dan Coats, tendered his resignation. Trump was ambiguous in announcing the replacement. He initially intended to nominate Republican John Ratcliffe to replace Coats, however, he withdrew Ratcliffe from consideration a few days later. It was also not clear if he would retain Gordon in the agency, and raise her as the acting director in the interim. Sources told CNN Gordon wasn’t likely to be retained because she "is viewed by some in the administration as someone who is not going to be the type of political loyalist Trump wants in that role."

According to the NY Times, a person familiar with the matter said that Trump did not allow Gordon to personally deliver a recent intelligence briefing after she arrived at the White House.

Following the event, Gordon resigned on August 8, 2019.

Personal life

Gordon and her husband, Jim, live in Northern Virginia. The couple has two adult children.


On artificial intelligence:

We’ll need humans. Judgement is really important, but humans cannot get through all the information that is available to us…patterns will allow us to infer intent. Intent is the holy grail…if you want to know what I will do this weekend, you can look at the data of what I have done.

On transparency:

Because of the technology that is available to us, it is really hard to keep secrets. Now what is exciting about this is that it presents a great opportunity for an open society, because it is found mainly in the direction of what we believe. So all of that stuff that is now visible to us is beneficial to an open society and detrimental to the authoritarian society. But the challenge that is placed on us is that it finds the seams in our system, as we have seen. The advantage that it provides to authoritarian societies is that they without the same norms can use that same technology – that is potentially for good – for evil.

On leadership:

This is the moment, where we have used up our opportunity to draft off of the advances of our predecessors. This is the moment of creation. We are going to have to find new ways and develop new policies, new technology, new advances, new ways of thinking, new ways to work between the government and private sector. This is the dawn of creation. And all of us – government and private sector – are finding that this is hard.


March 21, 2018: Jack Dangermond and Susan M. Gordon explore the future of GIS and intelligence.

To cite the article
We strive for accuracy and fairness. If you notice a mistake, please contact us. Below the article, you will find links to the references used.
Article Title: Susan M. Gordon: American Intelligence Officer - Biography and Life
Author(s): PeoplePill.com Editorial Staff
Website Title: PeoplePill
Publisher: PeoplePill
Article URL: https://peoplepill.com/people/susan-m-gordon/
Publish Date: 26 Sep 2017
Last Update Date: 14 Feb 2020
Date Accessed: 11 Jul 2020
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