CIA's new recruitment website aims to diversify spy agency

FILE - This May 21, 2018 file photo shows incoming Central Intelligence Agency director Gina Haspel at the agency's headquarters in Langley, Va. The CIA is looking for spies from all backgrounds and walks of life. Striving to further diversify its ranks, the nation's premier intelligence agency launched a new website Monday to find top-tier candidates who will bring a broader range of life experiences.  (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
FILE - This May 21, 2018 file photo shows incoming Central Intelligence Agency director Gina Haspel at the agency's headquarters in Langley, Va. The CIA is looking for spies from all backgrounds and walks of life. Striving to further diversify its ranks, the nation's premier intelligence agency launched a new website Monday to find top-tier candidates who will bring a broader range of life experiences. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci) (Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

WASHINGTON – Wanted: Spies from all backgrounds and walks of life.

Striving to further diversify its ranks, the CIA launched a new website Monday to find top-tier candidates who will bring a broader range of life experiences to the nation’s premier intelligence agency

The days of all American spies being white male graduates from Ivy League schools are long gone. The CIA director is a woman and women head all five of the agency’s branches, including the directorates of science and technology, operations and digital innovation.

But while the CIA has been diversifying for years, intelligence agencies still lag the federal workforce in minority representation. With thousands of job applicants annually, the CIA wants to do more to ensure its workforce reflects national demographics.

The revamped website has links for browsing CIA jobs complete with starting salaries and requirements, sections on working at the agency, and a streamlined application process.

“We’ve come a long way since I applied by simply mailing a letter marked ‘CIA, Washington, D.C.,’” said CIA Director Gina Haspel, who joined the agency in 1985. She said in a statement that she hopes the new website piques the interest of talented Americans and gives them a sense of the “dynamic environment that awaits them here.”

Haspel has made recruitment a priority since she became the first female director in May 2018. Since then, the CIA has started advertising on streaming services, launched an Instagram account and an online “onion site,” a feature that makes both the information provider and the person accessing information more difficult to trace.

Last year, the CIA designated its first executive for Hispanic engagement, Ilka Rodriguez-Diaz, a veteran of more than three decades with the agency. She first joined after attending a CIA job fair in New Jersey.