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Lynne Doucette

Lynne Doucette

Lt. Lynne D. Doucette is a patrol supervisor and defensive tactics trainer with the Brunswick (Maine) PD. Prior to being the first female promoted at BPD, she worked as an undercover detective assigned to the state narcotics task force.

Patricia Teinert

Patricia Teinert

Patricia A. Teinert has been a Texas peace officer since 1984. She has served as a patrol officer, investigator, and member of a juvenile gang and narcotics task force. She is currently a patrol officer with Katy ISD Police Department.
Women in Law Enforcement

Why Women Excel In Counter-Terrorism Roles

Ego suppression helps women succeed in counter-terrorism roles.

May 09, 2013  |  by Robin Hattersley Gray

Photo: Yuda Chen
Photo: Yuda Chen

I just came across a blog post on CNN by former CIA counterterrorism analyst Susan Hasler on the role she and other women played in tracking al Qaeda and Osama bin Laden in the 1990s. She talked about what she believed to be the "special genius" women have for tracking terrorists:

"Suppressing one's ego is an important part of being a good counterterrorism analyst. First, you have to be willing to admit up front what you don't know. The amount of data is so large that no one individual can look at all of it. A good analyst acknowledges her blind spots and networks with other analysts to fill them. When it comes to ego suppression, women are just better at it than men. They've had more practice."

Hasler claims that the women who tracked bin Laden were, unlike many of their male co-workers, willing to track al Qaeda at a time when bin Laden and his cohorts were not considered by the CIA to be a "hot account," nor a good way for CIA analysts to get ahead in their careers.

These comments bring to mind a survey Campus Safety conducted several years ago. Despite the fact that women make up more than 51% of the U.S. population, only 12% of the magazine's Salary Survey respondents were women. Additionally, 62% of respondents said that 20% or less of the employees in their departments were female.

Considering the different outlooks on life—and possible skill sets—that women bring to the table compared to men, it just makes sense for campuses to recruit more female police and security officers, chiefs, and security directors. Not doing so could leave your campus and community unnecessarily vulnerable.

So ... what is your department doing to attract and keep women on the payroll?

Robin Hattersley Gray is the executive editor of Campus Safety Magazine, a sister publication of POLICE Magazine.

Comments (4)

Displaying 1 - 4 of 4

Dr. Jeffrey P. Rush @ 5/9/2013 7:38 PM

Ms. Gray seems to be suggesting that women and men are different. That the bring different stuff to the table. It's 2013, surely she can't be suggesting what's been suggested for years and been dismissed by many?

Random @ 5/14/2013 6:23 PM

I find it much easier to safety check bathrooms with a female officer’s assistance; strangely this enough comes-up from time-to-time.

JoJo @ 5/15/2013 9:28 AM

What exactly did they excel at? If they were doing such a good job against Al Qaeda why did 9-11 happen? This article is a joke. Hard workers are hard workers, it doesn't matter what gender they are.

Ivy Bush @ 7/16/2013 8:04 AM

JoJo you missed the point of the article...Are you a guy? A female would not have made the same mistake. Touche.

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