Special Agent Training Graduation

Special Agent Training Graduation

October 21, 2019 0 By Stanley Isaacs


and now to address the class and administer
the Oath of Office, it is my distinct honor to reintroduce the Director of the United
States Secret Service, Joseph Clancy Well welcome to all of you, all the mothers
and fathers, and brothers and sisters, colleagues and friends that could be here today
it’s a very exciting day for the graduating class but also for us as well
I remember when I received the first call back in 1983
I was selected as a Secret Service Agent That same call that you received
and I know I jumped up in my little apartment, I was so excited
Fortunately there was no one else in the apartment so no one heard me, but it was tremendous,
and I remember to this day how excited I was to be a part of this Agency
I would imagine all of you felt a great sense of pride that day that you were selected
and I suspect your family was as well they were beaming with joy and admiration
Don’t ever forget that feeling and the responsibility that comes with your selection
I commend each of you for meeting our requirements The fact that you are about to become a Special
Agent demonstrates that you have the drive, the sense of purpose and the persistence to
perform the unique duties of the United States Secret Service Special Agent
There’s a lot of talent and experience within this class
You were selected from thousands of applicants and endured a battery of interviews and tests
just to become a recruit Now you have successfully completed the rigorous
training program You should be proud, you are now a member
of an elite agency with a unique mission Failure Is Not An Option
You’re now part of a legacy of over 150 years I’m sure that throughout your training Instructors
have mentioned you will be witnessing history The Secret Service was there at the end of
the Civil War We witnessed the Spanish American War
Arrested spies during World War One Travelled with Roosevelt to Malta during World
War Two From the Cold War to Operation Enduring freedom
we have protected America during our nation’s journey
Last month the terrorist organization ISIS attacked the nation of France
It is unfortunate that we cannot stop time but the United States Secret Service is prepared
to meet the challenges that history presents us Like the thousands of agents before you You are the next generation to accept this
solemn mission Shortly after the Paris attacks, the President
travelled safely under the protection of the Secret Service to Turkey, the Philippines
and Malaysia This week the President returned safely from
Paris Throughout these events the Secret Service
mission continued Our mission did not change…it did not stop
We stand today ready to meet these challenges The core values of the Secret Service..Justice..Duty…Courage…Honesty…and
Loyalty These are not just benign terms, but rather
expectations The morale code that binds us together
Do not be tempted to think that they are just words
For just as your commission books states “Worthy of Trust and Confidence”
These five words represent the character the legacy of this agency and the sacrifices
made from those that came before you Speaking of Legacies
On October 9th of this year we lost a valued member of Secret Service family Assistant
Director Jerry Parr Does anyone here know who Jerry Parr is?
Show of hands Most of you probably do, but you don’t know
him by name possibly I’ll tell you a little story here
Everyone who has worked in the Secret Service remembers Jerry as the Agent who saved President
Reagan’s life during the assassination attempt in 1981
You all have seen film of Mr. Parr covering the president and throwing him in the limousine
and getting him to the hospital Later when speaking about the assignation
attempt Mr. Parr stated that what went through his
mind as he heard the gunshots He said quote “I sort of knew what they were”
“and I’ve been waiting for them all of my career in a way”
“That’s what every agent waits for, those gunshots”
Although he retired in 1985 Jerry’s contributions to this agency are an integral part of our
history, just as your contributions will be I mention Mr. Parr here today to illustrate
that the Secret Service stands apart from all other Federal agencies in it’s duties
and its mission Mr. Parr was well aware of this distinction
As a retired agent, he spoke to SATC Class #134 in 1994 at their graduation
He also spoke at mine in 1984 His words of wisdom apply today and I would
like to read you some excerpts from his speech to that graduating class
Quote “You know from your training that the Secret Service
strives for excellence and competence from top to bottom in fulfilling it’s criminal
and protective missions Each of you are now connected to past generations
of agents by a web of invisible obligations that hold this family together
Invisible Obligations do not get embedded in the human psyche over night
An organizational culture takes about a hundred years to mature or about four generation
Let me be specific When Superintendent William Wood became our
first Chief in 1865, he and 15 – 20 hired Operatives went to work to suppress counterfeiting
in the North and South following the Civil War
By 1866 over 200 criminals had been arrested The first generation of Agents set the tone
and style for the future of this agency Just accomplish the job…..Period.” end quote
Mr. Parr goes on to state and again I quote “An organizational culture is a a product
of time, successes, sufferings, failures and just plain hard work.”
“After a hundred years or so, deep roots are developed and a corporate memory evolves.”
“While another agency can purchase persons, equipment, technology similar to the Secret
Service, it can not buy this corporate memory.” “This is a priceless commodity”
“But all organizational assumptions must be scrutinized by every generation”
His last words to the Class 134 that day were the following:
“As you are commissioned today, there are men and women perhaps younger than you who
are also completing classes in the Baka Valley of Lebanon or in other camps”
“We call these men and women terrorists” “They call themselves patriots”
“They are people focussed and willing to die for their cause”
“Somewhere, sometime in this generation, you may have to face those individuals”
“It is a strange paradox, that they and we resemble one another, yet are totally dedicated
to opposite goals” “You men and women must equally be dedicated
to your mission to prevail in those moments of truth”
“Your training here will give you the decisive edge”
“I suspect your generation may face some daunting task but I also know that not only will you
endure, you will prevail and that will be your destiny” end quote
Wise words from a very wise man, and his wisdom is just as relevant today as it was 21 years
ago Your starting your career at a critical time
in our agencies history Never before has the Secret Service been under
so much scrutiny from the media to the halls of Congress
This is a great opportunity to show we are on the right path
That destiny will be determined your commitment to the mission and to this agency
All of you have made sacrifices that have brought you to this place where you are today
However, to whom much is given, much is required Today you find yourselves being elevated to
a higher of responsibility and to a higher level of accountability
We must keep in mind that as dedicated, as committed and as passionate as we may be to
our mission Our adversaries are just as dedicated, just
as committed, just as passionate about their mission
To attack and destroy our freedoms, our democracy, our American way of life
The great philosopher Plato stated: quote “It does not matter if the cobblers and masons
fail to do their jobs well” “But if the guardians fail….the democracy
will crumble” end quote I will ask each of you as you receive your
Commission Book today to be mindful of the footsteps in which you walk
Remember the men and women that came before you over the past 150 years and who have dedicated
themselves to our mission, our duty and to each other
Throughout the past several weeks, you have developed camaraderie within your class
I hope that you will take that sense of team and mission wherever go in your careers in
the Secret Service However, I also want to stress that while
your work is important, your relationships with your family are even more so
I realize we consider Law Enforcement as a family
but the family I’m talking about her today is the one that got you here
The family that instilled in you the values and the character that helped you choose Law
Enforcement as your life’s career During my career as an agent I developed many
close friendships, but in the end we cannot forget the sacrifices our families made
In a few minutes I will present you with your badge and Commission Book
This is not a right granted to everyone, it is a privilege
A privilege reserved for a select few and it calls for a higher level of personal
sacrifice and integrity I had the distinct honor of placing my signature
on your Commission Book and authorizing you to bare firearms, and make arrests
and most important, commending you the entire world as Worthy of Trust and Confidence
Always remember the American people have the right to expect this
and those we protect, deserve it I am privileged and proud to be Director of
this organization I respect distinguished past, and have high
expectations for you, our future Your days ahead as a member of the Secret
Service will be exciting and filled with both challenges and opportunities
Take advantage of these opportunities and help make this organization one that every
employee is proud to be a part of and now
It’s my honor to administer your Oath Please stand
Class 315 raise your right hand and repeat after me
I, do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution
of the United States Against all enemies foreign and domestic
That I take this obligation freely Without any mental reservation or purpose
of evasion And that I will well and faithfully discharge
the duties of the office On which I am about to enter
So help me God Congratulations to each of you and let me
be the first to welcome and recognize you as United States Secret Service Special Agents