I had appointed Avril to take over for Nick Lemann as Director of CWP when President-elect Biden reached out to her, first for guidance on the transition and then to serve as DNI. Now, her challenges are, to say the least, formidable and even daunting, including: addressing breaches in the nation’s cybersecurity defenses, the rising scourge of domestic terrorism, and the need to depoliticize intelligence collection and assessment.
Columbia and CWP, along with Columbia Law School and the School of International and Public Affairs, are immensely better for the time she spent with us and the many contributions she made to our work. So, in addition to thanking Avril, we congratulate her and wish her the very best as she takes on an assignment of truly historic significance. Avril Haines was great for Columbia, and now she will be great for the nation and the world.