For more than six years, the CIA has worked closely with the Operation Warfighter Program to provide injured service members the opportunity to gain work experience during their recovery.
Internally referred to as the Wounded Warrior Program, CIA has provided several temporary work assignments to service members recuperating at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, MD, as well as Ft. Belvoir and Quantico in Virginia.
The Agency has a dedicated program manager within the CIA Recruitment Center who helps connect the Agency with potential candidates for the program.
“The goal of CIA’s Wounded Warrior Program is to provide service members undergoing treatment and rehabilitation experience outside of the hospital environment as they transition to the civilian workforce or back into the military,” the program manager said, according to a notice posted on nthe CIA’s Web site. “It gives them hope that they can continue serving their country even though they face challenges in their recovery.”
Since the program began in 2007, candidates have served in security, operations and staff officer positions in the National Clandestine Service (NCS), the Directorate of Support and the Directorate of Science and Technology.
James, now a Technical Information Security Officer, originally worked in support of the NCS mission as a participant in the Wounded Warrior Program. He was wounded in 2006 while serving in Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom. His years of training as a Marine and his expertise in telecommunications fit in well with the Agency’s mission needs. As one of the first recruits to join the Agency through the program, James broke barriers he never thought possible.
“I never thought I would be a CIA officer, and I’m very grateful to the Agency for the opportunities I’ve been afforded,” James said. “There’s definitely a lot of fight in me, and I’ll continue to do it until I can’t anymore.”