U.S. Border Patrol Acting Chief Carla Provost meets with Egypt’s Ministry of Defense Border Guard Staff General Bassem Riad Soliman Helal to discuss border security cooperation at CBP headquarters in Washington on Feb. 22, 2018. (U.S. Customs and Border Protection photo by Glenn Fawcett)

Carla Provost Named First Woman to Lead U.S. Border Patrol

Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Kevin McAleenan announced this morning at the agency’s Washington headquarters that Acting Chief of the U.S. Border Patrol Carla Provost is now in the first woman to permanently lead the USBP.

“There is no one more suited to lead the Border Patrol,” McAleenan said. “It is my distinct honor to appoint Chief Provost to this position. I have absolute confidence in her experience, leadership, judgment and dedication to lead the Border Patrol, as well as her unwavering commitment to our mission, and our agency.”

Provost was named acting chief in April 2017 after Chief Ronald Vitiello was named acting deputy commissioner of CBP. Vitiello has since been name acting director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Provost began her career with the Border Patrol in 1995, and was first assigned to the Douglas Station in the Tucson Sector. She was promoted to supervisory agent in 1998, and to field operations supervisor in 2001.

In 2006, she transferred to the Yuma Sector as assistant chief patrol agent. In 2009, she became the patrol agent in charge of the Wellton Station in the Yuma Sector, and in 2011 she was appointed to the SES position of deputy chief patrol agent of the El Paso Sector.

Two years later, Provost became the chief patrol agent of the El Centro Sector. In 2015, she was named deputy assistant commissioner of the Office of Professional Responsibility, where she oversaw compliance with all CBP-wide programs and policies relating to corruption, misconduct, or mismanagement. She was named deputy chief of USBP in 2016.

Provost said she is “humbled and honored to accept this position and the challenges that come with it.”

“The Border Patrol is a family, and I will do everything to live up to this great responsibility and represent my ‘family’ to the best of my ability,” she said. “I am so proud of the men and women of the Border Patrol. I know first-hand the sacrifices they make every day to protect this country, and recognize the outstanding leadership we have, and the brave and tireless work of our agents.”

Provost said her priority will be working “to support our personnel with the resources and equipment they need to do their jobs in a safe and effective manner.”

“Our people are our most important resource, and supporting them is my primary responsibility,” she said.

Of making history as the first woman to lead the Border Patrol, Provost told reporters “there have been many women who have paved the way for me getting here.”

Bridget Johnson is the Managing Editor for Homeland Security Today. A veteran journalist whose news articles and analyses have run in dozens of news outlets across the globe, Bridget first came to Washington to be online editor and a foreign policy writer at The Hill. Previously she was an editorial board member at the Rocky Mountain News and syndicated nation/world news columnist at the Los Angeles Daily News. Bridget is a senior fellow specializing in terrorism analysis at the Haym Salomon Center. She is a Senior Risk Analyst for Gate 15, a private investigator and a security consultant. She is an NPR on-air contributor and has contributed to USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, New York Observer, National Review Online, Politico, New York Daily News, The Jerusalem Post, The Hill, Washington Times, RealClearWorld and more, and has myriad television and radio credits including Al-Jazeera and SiriusXM.

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