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Akil Davis Appointed Special Agent in Charge of FBI’s Phoenix Field Office

Special Agent in Charge Akil Davis. Photo/FBI

By Steve Neavling

Akil Davis is returning to his home state of Arizona to serve as the special agent in charge of the FBI’s Phoenix Field Office, the bureau announced Tuesday. 

Before the appointment, Davis was serving as a section chief in the International Operations Division at FBI headquarters in Washington, D.C.

Davis, who grew up in Mesa, became a special agent in 2005, when he was assigned to the Palm Springs Resident Agency to investigate violent and organized crimes and narcotics trafficking. He also served on the Los Angeles Field Office’s SWAT team. 

Davis deployed to Kabul, Afghanistan, in 2008 to work with the U.S. Army’s 10th Special Forces Group.

In 2011, Davis became a supervisory special agent and transferred to the Weapons of Mass Destruction Directorate at FBI headquarters. 

In 2014, he was back in the Los Angeles Field Office, managing the Transnational Organized Crime Program. 

In 2017, Davis served as the FBI’s acting assistant legal attaché to The Hague, Netherlands.

In 2019, Davis began serving as assistant special agent in charge of the Los Angeles office.

In 2021, Davis became section chief in the International Operations Division.

Davis received a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of California at Los Angeles and a master’s degree in educational leadership from Northern Arizona University. 

Before joining the bureau, Davis was a police officer for the Scottsdale Police Department in Arizona.


FBI Names New Special Agent in Charge of Seattle Field Office

FBI Special Agent in Charge Richard A. Collodi

By Steve Neavling

Richard A. Collodi has been named special agent in charge of the FBI’s Seattle Field Office. 

Before the appointment, he was serving as an inspector in the Inspection Division at FBI headquarters. 

Collodi began working as a special agent in 2002 in the Oklahoma City Field Office, where he investigated violent crime, criminal enterprises, economic crimes, and counterterrorism and worked human intelligence matters. In addition, he served on the SWAT team and deployed to Afghanistan in 2007 and 2012.  

In 2014, Collodi became supervisory special agent and transferred to the Director’s Operations and Coordination Unit at FBI headquarters.

Collodi transferred to Idaho in 2016 to work as supervisory senior resident agent of the Coeur D’Alene Resident Agency, a satellite office of the Salt Lake City Field Office.  

In 2019, Collodi became assistant special agent in charge of the Salt Lake City Field Office over the Administrative and Intelligence Branch. He handled intelligence, human intelligence, and crisis management programs, including the SWAT team, the Evidence Response Team, the Hazardous Evidence Response Team, and crisis negotiations, and numerous administrative programs. 

In 2020, Collodi was promoted to inspector in the Inspection Division at headquarters.  

Before he joined the bureau, Mr. Collodi was a police office in Boulder, Colo. He received a bachelor’s degree from the University of South Dakota with majors in criminal justice and psychology. 


Gregory Nelsen Named Special Agent in Charge of FBI’s Cleveland Office

Special Agent in Charge Gregory Nelson

By Steve Neavling

Gregory D. Nelsen has been named special agent in charge of the FBI’s Cleveland Office. 

Before the appointment, Nelsen was a deputy assistant director of the Criminal Justice Information Services (CJIS) Division in West Virginia.  

Nelsen began working as a special agent for the FBI in 2001, when he was assigned to the Miami Field Office to investigate violent crime, drugs, gangs, and organized crime investigations. In 2006, he was promoted to supervisory special agent and moved to the Weapons of Mass Destruction Directorate (WMDD) at FBI headquarters in Washington, D.C. 

At WMDD, he was assigned to the CIA’s Counter Terrorist Center/WMD Iraq Unit. 

In 2008, Nelsen began training new agent trainees at the FBI Academy in Quantico, Va. 

In 2010, Nelsen became supervisor of human intelligence programs in the Buffalo Field Office in New York. He later supervised Buffalo’s Joint Terrorism Task Force. 

Nelsen moved to the Pittsburgh Field Office in 2016 and served as the assistant special agent in charge (ASAC) of the Criminal Branch and the Pennsylvania resident agencies. 

In 2017, he transitioned to ASAC over Pittsburgh’s cyber and intelligence programs. 

Nelsen became section chief of the CJIS Division’s National Threat Operations Section in 2019. 

In 2020, he was promoted to deputy assistant director of the CJIS Division’s Operational Programs Branch. 

Before joining the FBI, Nelsen was a police officer with the Virginia Beach Police Department in Virginia. He received a bachelor’s degree from St. Lawrence University in Canton, New York.


George Piro, Retiring Special Agent in Charge of FBI’s Miami Field Office, Opens Up About Career

Special Agent George Piro

By Steve Neavling

George Piro, special agent in charge of the FBI’s Miami Field Office, is retiring with plans to become a martial arts pro. 

Beginning next week, Piro will train as a Brazilian ju-jitsu fighter, with a fight scheduled later this year in Las Vegas, he told 7News in a wide-ranging interview.

Piro said the pinnacle of his career was landing the top job at the Miami Field Office. 

“That was a dream come true,” he said. “My best day was when I was selected to be head of the office.”

The lowest point off is career was finding out that two of his special agents had been killed while serving a warrant in a child exploitation case. 

“My worst day was on Feb. 2 at 6:18 a.m, when my phone rang that day,” Piro said. “The FBI had lost two incredible special agents, Daniel Alfin and Laura Schwartzenberger.”

Piro is known for interrogating Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein in 2004.  

“The idea was to allow him to come to the conclusion that I was a very powerful very high-ranking member of the government,” Piro said.

In truth, he had been on the jobs for less than five years. 

“For example, when I walked into the detention area, where Saddam was being held, the MPs cleared the path, they showed a lot of deference to me,” Piro said. “If I said something they would run.”

His plan worked, and Hussein opened up that the country’s weapons of mass destruction had been destroyed. 


Michael Stenger, Former Secret Service Official and U.S. Senate Sergeant-at-arms, Dies at 71

By Allan Lengel

Michael Stenger, who worked for U.S. Secret Service for more than three decades, and resigned from his post as U.S. Senate’s sergeant-at-arms after the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol, died Monday at age 71, the Washington Post reports.

Michael Stenger

He died of natural cause, possibly cancer, sources told the Associated Press.

Stenger, who was known for his good sense of humor, served as sergeant-at-arms of the Senate since 2018, and resigned in January 2021 after the insurrection. Sen. Mitch McConnell had requested his resignation.

The Post noted:

“News of Stenger’s passing on Tuesday fueled baseless conspiracy theories online, with some social media users calling his death “suspicious” and attempting to link it to the surprise Jan. 6 hearing announced just 24 hours earlier by the House committee investigating the Capitol insurrection. Stenger died of natural causes, and there is no evidence he was set to testify at that hearing. Cassidy Hutchinson, a Trump White House aide, testified before the committee.”

Stenger was with Secret Service for 35 years, working as an agent and in management in positions including Assistant Director for the Office of Investigations and the Assistant Director of the Office of Protective Research. In 2011, he joined the office of sergeant-at-arms. In 2018, he was named to the top position.

Stenger got to know a lot of interesting people along the way. In fact, when he stepped down as head of the Secret Service’s Washington Field Office, he had one of his friends Tony Sirico call in on a speaker phone to say a few words. Sirico played the role of “Paulie Walnuts” on “The Sopranos.”


FBI Has Two New Executive Assistant Directors at Headquarters

The FBI’s current headquarters in Washington D.C., named after J. Edgar Hoover.

By Steve Neavling

FBI Director Christopher Wray has named two new executive assistant directors at FBI headquarters. 

Jennifer L. Moore has been named executive assistant director of the Human Resources Branch, where she will oversee the Human Resources, Security, and Training Divisions and the Office of Disciplinary Appeals. 

Timothy Langan has been named executive assistant director of the Criminal, Cyber, Response, and Services Branch, where he will oversee the Criminal Investigative, Cyber, International Operations and Victim Services Divisions and the Critical Incident Response Group. 

Langan, who joined the FBI as a special agent in 1998, held various leadership positions, including assistant director of the Counterterrorism Division and special agent in charge of the Kansas City Field Office.

Moore, who began her career with the FBI in 1995, also held various leadership positions, including assistant director of the Security Division, special agent in charge of the Intelligence and Incident Response Division, and assistant director of the Security Division. 


Former TSA Administrator ‘Kip’ Hawley Dies at Age 68

Former TSA Administrator Edmund S. “Kip” Hawley

By Steve Neavling

Edmund S. “Kip” Hawley, who served as TSA administrator from July 2005 to January 2009, died Monday. 

He was 68.

Details of his death were not immediately available. 

“It is with a heavy heart that I share the loss of former TSA Administrator Kip Hawley,” TSA Administrator David Pekoske tweeted. “His legacy was a model for compassionate public service, innovation, and customer service which remains a cornerstone @TSA today. The #TSAWorkforce stands with Kip’s family and loved ones.”

In a joint statement, U.S. Reps. Bennie G. Thompson, D-MS, chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security, and John Katko, R-NY, ranking member of the House Committee on Homeland Security, said Hawley “played an integral role” in protecting Americans following the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

“Our homeland security community is saddened to lose an important contributor to the early days of TSA and the Department of Homeland Security,” they said. “I commend former Administrator Hawley for his service and dedication to securing our Nation’s aviation system. I share his focus on advocating for the dedicated professionals at TSA. As he said in a statement for the record at our recent committee hearing on the State of TSA Twenty Years After 9/11, ‘intelligence and technology are critical to effective security, but people were – and still are – TSA’s strongest asset.’”

Born in Waltham, Mass., Hawley received a political science degree from Brown University in 1976 and a law degree from the University of Virginia School of Law in 1980. 

He left behind a wife and two children. 


Walter Slosar Named Chief Patrol Agent in Charge of Border Patrol’s Miami Sector Headquarters

By Steve Neavling

Walter N. Slosar has been named chief patrol agent in charge of Border Patrol’s Miami Sector headquarters. 

Slosar replaces John Modlin, who now leads the Tucson Border Patrol Sector.  

Before the appointment, Slosar was serving as acting deputy chief patrol agent of the El Paso Sector. 

During his career with Border Patrol, Slosar has held a variety of supervisory, managerial and leadership positions, including patrol agent in charge of the Santa Teresa, New Mexico, and Fort Hancock, Texas, stations, assistant chief patrol agent at Border Patrol’s headquarters in Washington D.C., and division chief of operations for the El Paso Sector. 

“I am excited for this opportunity, and I am honored to serve alongside the dedicated men and women who make up the Miami Sector,” Slosar said in a statement. “The Miami Sector has established tremendous partnerships with law enforcement partners and stakeholders throughout Florida and the Caribbean. I look forward to working with all of our partners and supporting a unified effort to secure our coastal border and to protect our communities.”