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Chief, Civil Liberties, Privacy, and Transparency

Alexander W. Joel

Click for high resolution image of Alexander W. Joel

Alexander W. Joel is the Chief of the Office of Civil Liberties, Privacy and Transparency (CLPT) for the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI). CLPT works to ensure that the Intelligence Community carries out its national security mission in a manner that protects privacy and civil liberties, and, at the same time, provides appropriate transparency to the public.

As Chief of CLPT, Mr. Joel serves as the Civil Liberties Protection Officer, a position established by the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Protection Act of 2004. Reporting directly to the Director of National Intelligence, the Civil Liberties Protection Officer’s responsibilities include ensuring that the protection of privacy and civil liberties is appropriately incorporated in Intelligence Community policies and procedures, reviewing complaints of possible abuses of privacy and civil liberties in programs and operations administered by the ODNI, and ensuring that the use of technology sustains, and does not erode, privacy.

Mr. Joel's appointment to this position was announced by then-Director of National Intelligence John Negroponte in December 2005. Mr. Joel had previously been performing the duties of that position on an interim basis.

In addition, Mr. Joel serves as the ODNI’s Chief Transparency Officer. In that capacity, he chairs the Intelligence Transparency Council, and leads and coordinates the IC’s efforts to enhance transparency, consistent with the Principles of Intelligence Transparency for the Intelligence Community. Director of National Intelligence James Clapper named him to that position in October 2015.

Mr. Joel began his professional career as an officer in the U.S. Army Judge Advocate General’s Corps, with assignments that included both prosecution and criminal defense. He then worked as a technology attorney at the law firm of Shaw, Pittman, Potts & Trowbridge in Washington, D.C. (now Pillsbury Winthrop), and as the privacy, technology, and e-commerce attorney for Marriott International, Inc. Following 9/11, he was motivated to re-enter public service and worked as an attorney at the Central Intelligence Agency's Office of General Counsel. He joined the ODNI when it was stood up in 2005.

Mr. Joel formerly served on the Board of Directors of the International Association of Privacy Professionals, the world’s largest association of privacy professionals.

Mr. Joel received his law degree from the University of Michigan, and his undergraduate degree from Princeton University.

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