Photo: The British Communications Intelligence Agency Gets First Female Leader

Ann Kest Butler, a 30-year veteran of the British National Security Service, has been appointed head of communications intelligence in the United Kingdom, the first woman to hold the post.

Anne Kist-Butler, currently Deputy Director General of MI6, the British Intelligence Service, will head the communications intelligence headquarters of GCHQ.

Announcing his appointment, Foreign Secretary James Cleverley said: “Anne Keist Butler has a proven track record of working at the center of the UK’s national security network, helping to counter threats from terrorists, cybercriminals and malevolent foreign powers.”

In his current position, Kest Butler is responsible for security, operations and investigative work, including preparations for responding to Russia’s own military operation in Ukraine.

She will start her new job in May, replacing Jeremy Fleming, who announced his resignation in January.

Kest Butler will be the first woman to lead British intelligence since Eliza Manningham-Buller left the Homeland Security Department in 2007.

Kest Butler said she is looking forward to returning to the service, where she previously served as the head of the department for combating terrorism and serious organized crime.

The intelligence apparatus that you will lead collects messages to prevent cyber attacks, terrorism and espionage.

Kest Butler added that GCHQ’s mission is to keep the UK safe, noting that it is as inspiring today as it was when it was founded over 100 years ago and that it operates in the heart of the United Kingdom and in the heart of our allies. ‘ response to some of the biggest challenges of our time.

Source: AB

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