The director of the Secret Service is stepping down. Joseph Clancy informed his colleagues of his decision to retire, effective March 4, saying that “for personal reasons, it is time.” Clancy, 61, says he wants to spend more time with his family.
Clancy was brought back to the Secret Service as director by former President Obama in 2014 after a string of security lapses and misconduct by agents and officers.
He had left the agency for a job in the private sector in 2011 after serving as the head of Obama’s protective detail.
Obama asked Clancy to return to the service as acting director after then-Director Julia Pierson was asked to resign. Clancy took over an agency in turmoil, with reports of carousing agents and security breaches, the most embarrassing when an Iraq War veteran scaled the White House fence and made it into the White House itself before being stopped.
In his letter to Secret Service staff, Clancy said he can assure them that “better days are ahead for this Agency with new leadership at the Director’s position” and that he could not be “more impressed, more grateful and more proud of all of you.”
The Secret Service has some 7,000 employees and is charged with investigating counterfeiting as well as protecting the president, vice president, their families, former presidents and other dignitaries.
President Trump, who Clancy said has been “very supportive” of the agency, will be able to name a replacement.