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First Name: Michael

Last Name: Hayden

Birthplace: Pittsburgh, PA, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Air Force (1947 - present)

Middle Name: Vincent

Date of Birth: 17 March 1945

Rank: General

Years Served: 1967-2008
Michael Vincent Hayden


Michael Vincent Hayden

General, U.S. Air Force

Michael Vincent Hayden was born on 17 March 1945 in Pittsburgh, PA, to an Irish-American couple, Sadie and Harry Hayden, Jr. who worked as a welder for a Pennsylvania manufacturing company. He has a sister, Debby, and a brother, Harry.

He went to St. Peter's Elementary school where, in 7th and 8th grade he played quarterback on the school football team then being coached by Dan Rooney, the son of the founder of the Pittsburgh Steelers, and current Chairman of the team. One of Hayden's first jobs was as an equipment manager for the Steelers. He continues to be an avid fan of the hometown Pittsburgh Steelers and, since the 1990s, has commuted with his wife and family to at least 3-4 games a year.

Hayden went on to Duquesne University in Pittsburgh where he earned a B.A. in History in 1967. He then attended graduate school at Duquesne for an M.A. in Modern American History in 1969.

Military Career

He is a graduate of the Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps program. Hayden was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the U.S. Air Force and entered active service in 1969.

Michael Hayden has served as Commander of the Air Intelligence Agency and Director of the Joint Command and Control Warfare Center, both headquartered at Lackland AFB. He has also served in senior staff positions in the Pentagon; Headquarters U.S. European Command, Stuttgart, Germany; the National Security Council, Washington, DC, and the U.S. Embassy in the then-People's Republic of Bulgaria. Hayden has served as Deputy Chief of Staff for United Nations Command and U.S. Forces Korea, Yongsan Garrison. He also worked in intelligence on Guam.

Hayden is a retired U.S. Air Force four-star General and former Director of the National Security Agency and Director of the Central Intelligence Agency. From 21 April 2005 to 26 May 2006, he was the Principal Deputy Director of National Intelligence, a position which once made him "the highest-ranking military intelligence officer in the armed forces."

He was Director of the National Security Agency (NSA) from 1999-2005. During his tenure as Director, the longest in the history of the agency, he oversaw the controversial NSA surveillance of technological communications between persons in the U.S. and alleged foreign terrorist groups, which resulted in the NSA warrantless surveillance controversy.

On 8 May 2006, Hayden was nominated for the position of CIA Director and re-appointment to the rank of General following the 5 May resignation of Porter J. Goss, and on 23 May, the Senate Intelligence Committee voted 12-3 to send the nomination to the Senate floor. His nomination was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on 26 May by a vote of 78-15. On 30 May 2006 and again the following day at the CIA lobby with President George W. Bush in attendance, Hayden was sworn in as the Director of the Central Intelligence Agency.

On 1 July 2008, Hayden retired from the Air Force after nearly 39 years of active-duty military service and continued to serve as Director of the CIA until 12 February 2009.

Promotion Dates

2 June 1967 - Second Lieutenant

7 June 1970 - First Lieutenant

7 December 1971 - Captain

1 June 1980 - Major

1 February 1985 - Lieutenant Colonel

1 November 1990 - Colonel

1 September 1993 - Brigadier General

1 October 1996 - Major General

1 May 1999 - Lieutenant General

22 April 2005 - General

Medals and Awards

Defense Distinguished Service Medal

Defense Superior Service Medal (2 Awards)

Legion of Merit

Bronze Star Medal

Meritorious Service Medal (3 Awards)

Air Force Commendation Medal

Air Force Achievement Medal

Joint Meritorious Unit Award

Air Force Outstanding Unit Award

Air Force Organizational Excellence Award

National Defense Service Medal with Bronze Service Star

Armed Forces Service Medal

Air Force Overseas Ribbon (Short Tour) (2 Awards)

Air Force Overseas Ribbon (Long Tour) (3 Awards)

Air Force Longevity Service Award (7 Awards)

Small Arms Expert Marksmanship Ribbon

Air Force Training Ribbon

Order of National Security Merit Cheonsu Medal (Republic of Korea)


Presidential Service Badge

Air Force Intelligence Badge, Master-Level

Foreign Awards

On 1 July 2010, he was appointed an Honorary Officer of the Order of Australia, "for service to bilateral and international security relations between Australia and the U.S."


• His native Northside neighborhood of Pittsburgh renamed a major highway to Heinz Field in his honor.

• On 26 July 2011, Hayden was inducted into the Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps Distinguished Alumni in a ceremony at Maxwell AFB, AL, officiated by Lt. Gen. Allen G. Peck, Commander, Air University.

Intelligence Career

Air Intelligence Agency

From 1996 to 1997, Hayden served as Commander of the AIA, an agency of 16,000 charged with defending and exploiting the "information domain."

National Security Agency

Hayden served as the Director of the National Security Agency and Chief of the Central Security Service at Fort George G. Meade, MD, from March 1999 to April 2005. As the Director of NSA and Chief of CSS, he was responsible for a combat support agency of the Department of Defense with military and civilian personnel stationed worldwide.

Strategy for the NSA

Hayden came to the NSA at a time of great trouble in the agency. Internal government analysis indicated it suffered from a lack of quality management and an outdated information technology infrastructure. In fact soon after he came on board, a huge part of the NSA network system crashed and was down for several days. Part of his plan to revitalize the agency was to introduce more outside contractors, induce a lot of old managers to retire and get rid of old management structures. Part of his plan also included increased openness at the agency; it had historically been one of the most secretive organs of government. He notably allowed James Bamford access for his book Body of Secrets. Hayden was also initially extremely concerned with following the laws against domestic surveillance. Many reports say that after 9/11, he became more concerned with stopping terrorism, and allegedly softened his stance against domestic surveillance. Hayden, however, has said that he believed everything the agency was doing was "effective, appropriate, and lawful."

On 9/11, Hayden immediately evacuated all non-essential personnel from NSA headquarters. After 9/11, the agency greatly increased its activity. Details about its operations have been largely hidden, but it played a major role in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and the Global war on terror. One notable example is its relationship with the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle 'drone' program.

Wiretaps of Domestic Communication

In May 2006, USA Today reported that, under Hayden's leadership, the NSA created a domestic telephone call database. During his nomination hearings, Hayden defended his actions to Senator Russ Feingold and others, stating that he had relied upon legal advice that the White House order to build the database was supported by Article Two of the U.S. Constitution executive branch powers (in which the President must "take care that the laws be faithfully executed"), overriding legislative branch statutes forbidding warrantless surveillance of domestic calls, which included the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). Previously, this action would have required a warrant from a FISA court. The stated purpose of the database was to eavesdrop on international communications between persons within the U.S. and individuals and groups overseas in order to locate terrorists.

Hayden also championed the Trailblazer Project, which was criticized by several NSA staffers for not including privacy protections for U.S. citizens. The critics included Diane S Roark, of the House Intelligence Committee, and NSA workers, Thomas Andrews Drake, Binney, Wiebe, and Loomis, several of whom quit their jobs in protest.

Principal Deputy Director of National Intelligence

As part of the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004, the CIA chief no longer would run the intelligence community. Instead a new office was created for this purpose; the Director of National Intelligence. General Hayden became the Principal Deputy Director of National Intelligence from May 2005 to May 2006 under the first DNI, John Negroponte.

Controversial Video

On 23 January 2006, General Hayden participated in a news conference. A YouTube video was posted claiming that Michael Hayden said "probable cause" is not in the 4th Amendment. But the transcript shows that General Hayden never said that. Instead, he said that it protects all of us against unreasonable search and seizure, while the reporter argued that the legal standard is probable cause. General Hayden's statement is reinforced by the U.S. Supreme Court: "The touchstone of the Fourth Amendment is reasonableness." It is only when the touchstone of reasonableness is not met that probable cause and a warrant is needed.

Director of the Central Intelligence Agency

On 8 May 2006, Hayden was nominated by President George W. Bush to be Director of the Central Intelligence Agency after the resignation of Porter J. Goss on 5 May 2006. He was later confirmed on 26 May 2006 as Director, 78-15, by full U.S. Senate vote.

Critics of the nomination and Hayden's attempts to increase domestic surveillance included Senator Dianne Feinstein who stated on 11 May 2006 that "I happen to believe we are on our way to a major constitutional confrontation on Fourth Amendment guarantees of unreasonable search and seizure."

Hayden is not the first active member of the military to be appointed to run the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). Those previously holding the position of Director of Central Intelligence while simultaneously holding a military rank were:

Rear Admiral Sidney Souers, a Navy officer, who was the first man to hold the position when the nascent organization was known as the Central Intelligence Group; then-Lieutenant General (later General) Hoyt S. Vandenberg, an Air Force officer, also Director of the CIG; Rear Admiral Roscoe H. Hillenkoetter, a Navy officer who, just prior to his appointment, was a Captain and Commanding Officer of the USS Missouri and who was the first DCI of the CIA; General Walter Bedell Smith, an Army officer.

President Jimmy Carter appointed Admiral Stansfield Turner, a Navy officer and a classmate of President Carter at the U.S. Naval Academy.


He is married to Jeanine Carrier, and they have a daughter and two sons.

In Retirement

General Hayden is currently a principal at the Chertoff Group, a security consultancy co-founded by former Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff.

Hayden also serves as a Distinguished Visiting Professor at George Mason University School of Public Policy and was elected to the Board of Directors of Motorola Solutions (NYSE:MSI) effective 4 January 2011.

Honoree ID: 735   Created by: MHOH




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