recognized analyst promoted to lead W.Va. Intelligence Fusion Center
W.Va. – The West Virginia agency created in response to the
Sept. 11 attacks has a new leader, W.Va. Military Affairs and Public Safety
Secretary Jeff Sandy announced Wednesday.
Jessica Griffith is now director of the
W.Va. Intelligence Fusion Center (WVI/FC). Secretary Sandy thanked Governor Jim
Justice for affirming his selection of Griffith as director, which is effective
At the W.Va. Fusion Center, multiple
levels of law enforcement, public safety agencies and private entities share
resources, expertise and information. The resulting collaboration makes the
most of their respective resources to prevent, detect, investigate and respond
to all hazards – including but not limited to terrorist and criminal activity.
"It is an honor and a privilege to be
selected to serve in this capacity,” Griffith said. “My goal is to strengthen
partnerships with those agencies who may be underutilizing our services, and
educate those who are unaware of our resources and capabilities so that we are
able to better assist in helping to protect West Virginians.”
Griffith has been a major part of the
Fusion Center’s success. Perhaps her key contribution has been to develop West
Virginia’s Fusion Liaison Officer (FLO) program. FLOs embrace the “See
Something, Say Something” concept. The program provides a platform for law
enforcement, first responders, and others in both the public and private
sectors to strengthen information-sharing.
The West Virginia FLO program has been
recognized both locally and nationally for assisting the response to numerous
recent natural disasters. Griffith was honored in 2016 for her outreach efforts
and dedication to working with private sector partners, receiving the
Partnership Award from the West Virginia International Association of Special
Griffith established the FLO program
following her 2011 hiring as Homeland Security Manager. She has also served as Supervisory
Analyst and FLO Coordinator. Griffith previously worked for the West Virginia
State Police as an Intelligence Analyst.
She earned a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice degree from what is
now West Liberty University, and a Master of Science in Criminal Justice degree
from Fairmont State University. Griffith
is also a graduate of the Fusion Center Leaders Program.
“My father had a very successful career in
law enforcement and criminal investigations.
His drive and determination to protect the citizens of this great state
inspired me to follow in his footsteps,” Griffith said. “I feel fortunate to be
afforded the opportunity to continue working in a field about which I feel so
Watching the events of 9/11 unfold on
television, meanwhile, instilled in Griffith a resolve “to help protect the
United States from future terrorist attacks.” As Director, Griffith said she
will seek to expand awareness about Suspicious Activity Reporting (SAR) tools
available to everyday citizens, “since the West Virginia Intelligence/Fusion
Center is the repository for SARs in the state.”
Griffith is just the second director of
the W.Va. Intelligence Fusion Center since its founding, 10 years ago next
month. She succeeds Thom Kirk, who remains the deputy secretary and general
counsel for Military Affairs and Public Safety. The Fusion Center is overseen
by the Cabinet Department’s Office of the Secretary.
“For nearly a decade, the West Virginia
Fusion Center has received countless awards and accolades from across the world,
and its work in West Virginia behind-the-scenes has been stellar,” said
Secretary Sandy. “I am confident that Ms. Griffith, as the new director of the
Fusion Center, will continue the tradition of assisting all West Virginia and
our nation’s law enforcement officers.”