Top two U.S. intelligence officials, ODNI officer honored with speechwriting awards

ODNI seal 112On April 26, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence posted the following announcement:

Two speeches written for the Director of National Intelligence and his Principal Deputy won in three categories of the preeminent international speechwriting competition, announced April 19 by Vital Speeches of the Day.

Both speeches were written by Trey Brown, who has been writing for Director James Clapper and Principal Deputy Director Stephanie O’Sullivan since October 2011.

The prestigious Cicero Speechwriting Awards, presented annually, recognize the work of speechwriters whose craft empowers leaders in every sector of business, politics and society. Vital Speeches of the Day was founded in 1934 as a monthly collection of the best speeches in the world. The mission of the Cicero Awards is to honor speechwriters for their contributions to public conversation as well as to celebrate all aspects of an unforgettable speech: style, substance, coherence and humanity.

In the category of “Controversial or Highly Politicized Topics,” Director Clapper’s speech from January 2015 took top prize.  Director Clapper delivered the speech— “National Intelligence, North Korea, and the National Cyber Discussion”—at Fordham University. “Taking the Diversity Challenge” given by PDDNI O’Sullivan in May 2015 at the IC Pride LGBTA Summit won in both the “Diversity” and “Government” categories.

Expressing his appreciation to his speechwriter, DNI Clapper wrote in an email, “This recognition has nothing to do with [the DNI or PDDNI] … it has everything to do with the richly-deserved recognition of you. You are the master of your profession.” DNI Clapper continued, “We execute what you create. We are exceedingly proud of you.” PDDNI O’Sullivan added, “These awards are an amazing recognition to an amazingly talented officer.”

Asked about his thoughts on the win Brown said, “I’m very fortunate to write for two leaders who both have the courage to share their thoughts, feelings and stories in deeply personal ways that audiences can relate to, and who don’t leave unsaid the things that need to be said. It’s all a speechwriter could ask for, and it’s why I love what I get to do every day.”

Trey is a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy and St. John’s College, Annapolis, Md.