Statement of Administrator Karen P. Tandy on Retirement from the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA)
OCT 22 -- (Washington, D.C.)-Today, Karen P. Tandy announced that she will be retiring as the Administrator of the Drug Enforcement Administration, after more than thirty years of public service. She has been named Senior Vice President of Motorola’s Global Government Relations and Public Policy Division. Ms. Tandy will serve as Motorola’s top public policy spokesperson on issues related to global telecom policy, trade, regulation, spectrum allocation, and country relations. In this position, Ms. Tandy also will be responsible for leading initiatives to increase Motorola’s global defense business within government and public safety.
“Karen’s substantial international relations and government affairs experience as well as her policy understanding make her an ideal and logical fit to lead our government and policy team,” said Gene Delaney, president of Government & Public Safety for Motorola’s Enterprise Mobility business. “We are confident that she will play an integral role in Motorola’s continued success both in North America and around the world.”
Reflecting on her 30 year career, with the last 4 years as the DEA Administrator, Ms. Tandy stated, “It just doesn’t get any better than this – leading 11,000 extraordinarily gifted people in DEA around the world who sacrifice everything to live our dangerous mission 24-7, every day of the year, in order to protect America’s children and communities. I will forever remain grateful to President Bush for this opportunity.”
Ms. Tandy has served as the Administrator of the Drug Enforcement Administration since her unanimous Senate confirmation in July 2003. Under her leadership, in an unprecedented move, Ms. Tandy set goals to strip drug lords of at least $3 billion in drug assets each year, which DEA exceeded this year -- two years ahead of pace and well above DEA’s own $2.4 billion annual budget. Also, for the first time ever, DEA ranked in the top 20 out of 222 federal agencies as one of the best agencies to work for in the federal government, and was the only federal law enforcement agency to receive a clean financial audit. At a time when methamphetamine spread across the United States like wildfire, Ms. Tandy led DEA initiatives that wiped out 92% of “super” meth labs in this country and slashed clandestine meth labs in the United States by more than 65%. During Ms. Tandy’s tenure, DEA also set all time high records for disrupting and dismantling global drug networks, which contributed to historic increases in the price of cocaine and methamphetamine and plummeting purity levels.
Ms. Tandy personally fought to restore DEA as a member of the Intelligence Community, which DEA achieved after a lapse of almost 20 years.
Ms. Tandy also strengthened DEA’s global position and partnerships to combat international drug trafficking and related terrorism, leading to historic extraditions of Taliban-connected drug lords from Afghanistan, leaders from each of the major drug cartels in Mexico, as well as FARC leaders and financiers from Colombia. Under her leadership, DEA established new offices in key international areas such as the United Arab Emirates, Southwest Asia, and along the Southwest Border. A recent report from the Office of the Inspector General noted, "since the current DEA Administrator took office in 2003, the DEA has increased its number of foreign offices, bolstered its international funding, and augmented the number of personnel assigned to combat foreign drug trafficking and organizations."
Under the Bush Administration, drug use amongst teenagers is down almost 25 percent and adult drug use in the workplace has fallen to its lowest level in almost 20 years.