The President’s Daily Brief: Delivering Intelligence to the First Customer

The President’s Daily Brief: Delivering Intelligence to the First Customer

Sep 16, 2015

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Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2015
1-4:45 p.m CT
LBJ Auditorium, LBJ Presidential Library

At a public event held at the LBJ Presidential Library on Wednesday, Sept.16 from 1-4:45 p.m., the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) released previously classified daily briefings it gave to Presidents Lyndon B. Johnson and John F. Kennedy in the 1960s. CIA Director John O. Brennan and Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper delivered remarks at the event which was titled, The President’s Daily Brief: Delivering Intelligence to the First Customer.

In addition, the event featured a panel discussion and remarks by other leaders from the academic, archivist, policymaking, and intelligence communities.

The President’s Daily Brief (PDB), known in Washington as the "PDB," contains intelligence analysis on crucial national security issues and concerns. Only the president, the vice president, and a small group of officials designated by the president receive the briefing, which one historian has described as the world’s smallest circulation, most highly classified newspaper.

All released PDBs are on the CIA website. For more information, see the full press release.


  • John O. Brennan, Director, CIA
  • James R. Clapper, Director, National Intelligence
  • Peter Clement, Deputy Assistant Director of CIA for Europe and Eurasia and former PDB Briefer, CIA
  • David S. Ferriero, Archivist of the United States
  • Porter J. Goss, Former Director, CIA
  • John Helgerson, Former Deputy Director for Intelligence, CIA
  • William Inboden, Executive Director, William P. Clements, Jr. Center for History, Strategy, and Statecraft, The University of Texas at Austin
  • Admiral Bobby Inman, Former Deputy Director of Central Intelligence, CIA
  • Joe Lambert, Director, Information Management Services, CIA
  • William H. McRaven, Chancellor, The University of Texas System
  • David Robarge, Chief Historian, CIA
  • Mark K. Updegrove, Director, LBJ Presidential Library

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Speaker Biographies

John O. Brennan
Director, Central Intelligence Agency

John Brennan John O. Brennan was sworn in as director of the Central Intelligence Agency on March 8, 2013. As director, he manages intelligence collection, analysis, covert action, counterintelligence, and liaison relationships with foreign intelligence services.

Before becoming director, Mr. Brennan served at the White House for four years as assistant to the president for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism. During that time, he advised the president on counterterrorism strategy and helped coordinate the U.S. government's approach to homeland security, including its policies for responding to terrorism, cyber attacks, natural disasters, and pandemics.

Mr. Brennan began his service in government at the Central Intelligence Agency, where he worked from 1980 to 2005. He spent most of his early career in the agency's main analytic arm, the directorate of intelligence, specializing in the Near East and South Asia before directing counterterrorism analysis in the early 1990s. In 1994 and 1995, he was the agency's intelligence briefer to President Bill Clinton.

After an assignment as a chief of station in the Middle East, Mr. Brennan served from 1999 to 2001 as chief of staff to George Tenet, who was then director of central intelligence. Mr. Brennan next worked as deputy executive director of the Central Intelligence Agency until 2003, when he began leading a multi-agency effort to establish what would become the National Counterterrorism Center. In 2004, he became the center's interim director. After retiring from the Central Intelligence Agency in 2005, Mr. Brennan worked in the private sector for three years.

Mr. Brennan graduated from Fordham University in 1977 with a Bachelor's Degree in Political Science. While enrolled at Fordham, he studied abroad at the American University in Cairo from 1975 to 1976. He later attended The University of Texas at Austin, where in 1980 he earned a Master's Degree in Government with a concentration in Middle Eastern studies.

James R. Clapper
Director of National Intelligence

James Clapper The Honorable James R. Clapper was sworn in as the fourth Director of National Intelligence (DNI) on August 9, 2010. As DNI, Mr. Clapper leads the United States Intelligence Community and serves as the principal intelligence advisor to the president.

Mr. Clapper retired in 1995 after a distinguished career in the U.S. Armed Forces. His career began as a rifleman in the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve and culminated as a lieutenant general in the U.S. Air Force and director of the Defense Intelligence Agency. His intelligence-related positions over his 32 years in uniform included assistant chief of staff for intelligence at U.S. Air Force Headquarters during Operations Desert Shield/Desert Storm and director of intelligence for three war-fighting commands: U.S. Forces Korea, Pacific Command, and Strategic Air Command. Of note, he also served two combat tours during the Southeast Asia conflict and flew 73 combat support missions in EC-47s over Laos and Cambodia.

Directly following his retirement, Mr. Clapper worked in industry for six years as an executive in three successive companies with his business focus being the intelligence community. Mr. Clapper also served as a consultant and advisor to Congress and to the Departments of Defense and Energy and as a member of a wide variety of government panels, boards, commissions, and advisory groups.

Mr. Clapper returned to the government in September 2001 as the first civilian director of the National Imagery and Mapping Agency (NIMA). He served as director for five years transforming it into the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) as it is today. Prior to becoming the Director of National Intelligence, Mr. Clapper served for over three years in two Administrations as the Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence, where he served as the principal staff assistant and advisor to the Secretary and Deputy Secretary of Defense on intelligence, counterintelligence, and security matters for the Department. In this capacity, he was also dual-hatted as the Director of Defense Intelligence for DNI.

Mr. Clapper earned a Bachelor's degree in government and politics from the University of Maryland, a master's degree in political science from St. Mary's University, San Antonio, Texas, and an honorary doctorate in strategic intelligence from the then Joint Military Intelligence College.

His awards include three National Intelligence Distinguished Service Medals; two Defense Distinguished Service Medals; the Air Force Distinguished Service Medal; the Coast Guard's Distinguished Public Service Award; the Department of Defense Distinguished Civilian Service Award; and a host of other U.S. military and foreign government awards and decorations.

Peter Clement
Deputy Assistant Director of CIA for Europe and Eurasia and former PDB Briefer, CIA

“Peter Peter Clement was named Deputy Assistant Director of CIA for Europe and Eurasia in May 2015. Mr. Clement joined the agency in 1977, spending most of his first 25 years as an analyst and manager focused on the Soviet Union and later Russia. Key management positions included division chief in the Office of Slavic and Eurasian Analysis (1992-1995), director of the Office of Slavic and Eurasian Analysis (1995-1997), and then CIA's Russia issue manager (1997-2003). Mr. Clement also completed a short policy tour as the NSC director for Russia in 2000.

Mr. Clement served as a PDB briefer for Vice President Cheney and National Security Adviser Rice (2003-04). He was Deputy Director of Intelligence for Analytic Programs (2005-2013), during which time he also did a short tour as chief of CIA's Presidential Transition Team in 2008. Mr. Clement holds a Ph.D. in Russian history and an M.A. in European history—both from Michigan State University, and a B.A. in liberal arts from SUNY-Oswego. Mr. Clement taught courses in Russian history and Soviet foreign policy as an adjunct professor for some 10 years at local universities; he also was a visiting professor at Columbia University (2013-2015) where he taught courses on intelligence and foreign policy, Russian security policy, and analytic thinking, writing and briefing. He has published some 10 journal articles and book chapters on Russian politics and foreign policy. He has been a member of the Council on Foreign Relations since 2001.

David S. Ferriero
Archivist of the United States

David Ferriero David S. Ferriero was confirmed as 10th archivist of the United States on November 6, 2009. Created in 1934, the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) is responsible for preserving and providing access to the records of the U.S. Government. NARA has 47 facilities across the country, including 13 Presidential Libraries, containing approximately 12 billion pages of textual records; 42 million photographs; miles and miles of film and video, and an ever increasing number of electronic records.

Previously, Mr. Ferriero served as the Andrew W. Mellon Director of the New York Public Libraries and held top library positions at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Duke University.

Mr. Ferriero earned bachelor's and master's degrees in English literature from Northeastern University and a master's degree from the Simmons College of Library and Information Science. Mr. Ferriero served as a Navy hospital corpsman during the Vietnam War.

Porter J. Goss
Former Director, Central Intelligence Agency

Porter Goss Porter J. Goss served as the nineteenth and last director of Central Intelligence from September 24, 2004 to April 21, 2005. At that time, he became the first director of the Central Intelligence Agency under the newly signed Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act. He continued as director until May 26, 2006.

Previously, Mr. Goss served as the Congressman from Southwest Florida for almost 16 years. He was chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence from 1997 until his nomination as director of the Central Intelligence Agency in August 2004. He served for almost a decade as a member of the committee, which oversees the intelligence community and authorizes its annual budget. During the 107th Congress, Mr. Goss co-chaired the joint congressional inquiry into the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. He was the second director of Central Intelligence to have served in Congress.

In addition to Intelligence, Mr. Goss' Congressional career focused on the environment, House ethics, senior issues, health care reform, and the Rules Committee. He was a leader on Everglade's legislation and takes great pride in the passage of the Ricky Ray Bill which offered relief to victims who contracted HIV through a contaminated blood supply. Mr. Goss was awarded the Distinguished Service Award in 2006.

Mr. Goss was a U.S. Army Intelligence officer from 1960 to 1962. He served as a clandestine service officer with the Central Intelligence Agency from 1962 to 1972, when a serious illness forced his retirement. While at the agency, he completed assignments in Latin America, the Caribbean, and Europe.

After leaving the agency, Mr. Goss and his family settled in Sanibel, Florida, where he was a small business owner and co-founder of a local newspaper. He was an active leader in the incorporation of the City of Sanibel in 1974 and was elected its first Mayor. From 1983 to 1988, Mr. Goss was a member of the Lee County (Florida) Commission, serving as its chairman in 1985 and 1986.

Mr. Goss holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Classical Greek from Yale University, graduating with high honors.

John Helgerson
Former Deputy Director for Intelligence, Central Intelligence Agency

John Helgerson Mr. Helgerson was inspector general of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) from 2002 until his retirement in 2009. Previously, he served as chairman of the Intelligence Community’s National Intelligence Council and deputy director of the National Imagery and Mapping Agency.

Mr. Helgerson began his career in government as an analyst of African politics at the CIA. At varying points he headed units responsible for coverage of Africa, Latin America, and Europe. Mr. Helgerson served in a number of senior management posts, including deputy director for Intelligence and director of Congressional Affairs.

Prior to his government service, Mr. Helgerson was an assistant professor of Political Science at the University of Cincinnati and a research affiliate of the University of Zambia in Lusaka. He specialized in international relations and African politics. A native of South Dakota, Mr. Helgerson graduated from Saint Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota and received M.A. and Ph.D. degrees from Duke University in Durham, North Carolina. He is the author of Getting to Know the President: Intelligence Briefings of Presidential Candidates, 1952-2004.

William Inboden
Executive Director, William P. Clements, Jr. Center for History, Strategy, and Statecraft, The University of Texas at Austin

William Inboden William Inboden is executive director of the William P. Clements, Jr. Center for History, Strategy, and Statecraft at The University of Texas at Austin. He also serves as associate professor at the LBJ School of Public Affairs and distinguished scholar at the Robert S. Strauss Center for International Security and Law. Inboden's other current roles include non-resident fellow with the German Marshall Fund of the United States, senior advisor with Avascent International, and associate scholar with Georgetown University's Religious Freedom Project. Previously, he served as senior director for strategic planning on the National Security Council at the White House.

He is also a contributing editor to Foreign Policy magazine, and his commentary has appeared in numerous outlets including the Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Washington Post, NPR, Sky News, and BBC. He has lectured widely in academic and policy settings, and received numerous research and professional development fellowships. He is the author of Religion and American Foreign Policy, 1945-1960: The Soul of Containment (Cambridge University Press). Inboden received his Ph.D. and Master's degrees in History from Yale University, and his A.B. from Stanford University.

Admiral Bobby Inman
Former Deputy Director of Central Intelligence, Central Intelligence Agency

Admiral Bobby Inman Admiral Bobby Inman graduated from The University of Texas at Austin in 1950, and from the National War College in 1972. He became an adjunct professor at The University of Texas at Austin in 1987. He was appointed as a tenured professor holding the Lyndon B. Johnson Centennial Chair in National Policy in August 2001. He served as interim dean of the LBJ School of Public Affairs from January 1-December 31, 2005 and again from January 2009 to March 2010.

Admiral Inman served in the U.S. Navy from November 1951 to July 1982, when he retired with the permanent rank of Admiral. While on active duty he served as director of the National Security Agency and deputy director of the Central Intelligence Agency. After retirement from the Navy, he was chairman and chief executive officer of the Microelectronics and Computer Technology Corporation (MCC) in Austin, Texas for four years and chairman, president, and chief executive officer of Westmark Systems, Inc., a privately owned electronics industry holding company for three years. Admiral Inman also served as chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas from 1987 to 1990.

Admiral Inman's primary activity since 1990 has been investing in startup technology companies, where he is a managing director of Gefinor Ventures and Limestone Ventures. He is a member of the board of directors of several privately held companies. He serves as a trustee of the American Assembly and the California Institute of Technology. He is an elected Fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration.

Joe Lambert
Director, Information Management Services, Central Intelligence Agency

Joe Lambert Mr. Lambert entered on duty with the Central Intelligence Agency in 1984, serving initially in the Office of the Deputy Director for Intelligence, and on the support staff of the National Intelligence Council. Subsequently, Mr. Lambert served as the information management officer for both the National Photographic Interpretation Center and later for the Directorate of Intelligence.

Mr. Lambert has served as the director of information management for the National Imagery and Mapping Agency, the National Reconnaissance Office, and since December 2007, the Central Intelligence Agency. In his current role, Mr. Lambert is responsible for records management, national security classification management, and declassification and release programs at the agency. In addition, Mr. Lambert is the deputy privacy and civil liberties officer at the agency.

Mr. Lambert earned his Masters of Public Administration (MPA) degree in Executive Legislative and Regulatory Management from George Washington University in 1994. Mr. Lambert is a recipient of the Intelligence Community's National Intelligence Certificate of Distinction.

William H. McRaven
Chancellor, The University of Texas System

William McRaven William H. McRaven, who recently retired as a four-star admiral after 37 years as a Navy SEAL, became chancellor of The University of Texas System in January 2015.

McRaven's last assignment with the Navy was Commander of U.S. Special Operations Command, during which time he led a force of 69,000 men and women with an annual budget of more than $10 billion. As leader of special operations, McRaven was responsible for conducting counterterrorism operations worldwide as well as building reliable military partners through programs that stressed the rule of law, universal rights, civil liberties, and military professionalism.

McRaven also is a recognized national authority on U.S. foreign policy and has advised the president, secretary of defense, secretary of state, secretary of homeland security, and other U.S. leaders on defense issues. He has worked extensively with leaders on Capitol Hill, and as a three- and four-star admiral, he was routinely involved in national policy decisions during both the Bush and Obama administrations.

McRaven has advised foreign Heads of State in Afghanistan, Iraq, Jordan and Yemen on U.S. counterterrorism policy. He also served as commander of Special Operations Command Europe and was tapped to be the first director of the NATO Special Operation Forces Coordination Centre.

McRaven graduated from The University of Texas at Austin in 1977 with a degree in journalism and received his Master's degree from the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey in 1991. In 2012, the Texas Exes honored McRaven with a Distinguished Alumnus Award.

David Robarge
Chief Historian, Central Intelligence Agency

David Robarge Dr. Robarge is the chief historian of the Central Intelligence Agency and has been a member of the agency's history staff since 1996. Before that he worked in the agency's Counterterrorism Center and the Directorate of Intelligence as an analyst on the Palestinian and Iraq accounts. He has published a classified biography of Director of Central Intelligence John McCone, and his articles and book reviews have appeared in various intelligence publications, including Studies in Intelligence, Intelligence and National Security, and the Journal of Intelligence History. Dr. Robarge holds a Ph.D. in American history from Columbia University, has taught United States intelligence history at George Mason University, and has written a biography of Chief Justice John Marshall.

Mark K. Updegrove
Director, LBJ Presidential Library

Mark Updegrove Mark K. Updegrove is the director of the LBJ Presidential Library in Austin, Texas, where, in April 2014, he hosted the Civil Rights Summit which included addresses by President Barack Obama and former Presidents Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, and George W. Bush. He is the author of Indomitable Will: LBJ in the Presidency (2012), Baptism by Fire: Eight Presidents Who Took Office During Times of Crisis (2009), and Second Acts: Presidential Lives and Legacies After the White House (2006). His latest book, Destiny of Democracy: The Civil Rights Summit at the LBJ Presidential Library, was published in February. He has conducted exclusive interviews with five U. S. Presidents.

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