DEALogo DRCNet Response to the
Drug Enforcement Administration
Briefing Book

Former DEA Administrators

John C. Lawn Robert C. Bonner

John R. Bartels Peter Bensinger Francis Mullen, Jr.

The DEA Administrator

Thomas A. Constantine Thomas A. Constantine was appointed Administrator of the United States Drug Enforcement Administration by President Bill Clinton on March 11, 1994. When selected by President Clinton to head the nation's lead agency in drug law enforcement, Mr. Constantine had been serving as Superintendent of the New York State Police.

He was the first Superintendent of the New York State Police in over 30 years to rise through the ranks, being appointed the tenth Superintendent by Governor Mario Cuomo in December 1986. In that capacity, he oversaw a statewide law enforcement agency composed of nearly 4,800 uniformed and investigative members and civilian support personnel. During his tenure as Superintendent, the State Police was honored in 1992 as the first recipient of the Governor's Excelsior Award, an award for excellence of continuing quality of service to the people of New York State. In October 1994, Mr. Constantine received the Governor's Law Enforcement Executive of the Year award.

He began his law enforcement career in 1960 as a deputy with the Erie County Sheriff's Department. In 1962 he entered the New York State Police as a uniform trooper and served as a Narcotics and Major Crime Investigator, Sergeant, Lieutenant in Charge of Recruiting, Captain of the Statewide Organized Crime Task Force, Major, Troop Commander, Staff Inspector, and Assistant Deputy Superintendent.

As Administrator of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Mr. Constantine oversees a workforce of over 7,000 Special Agents and support staff, and DEA offices in all 50 states and over 50 countries. During his tenure, he has initiated new programs to foster closer cooperation with state and local law enforcement agencies and to enhance their ability to fight violent drug crime. He has also directed DEA resources to assist foreign governments to dismantle the world's most powerful drug trafficking organizations, including the Cali mafia.

Administrator Constantine has advanced rigorous integrity and ethics standards for DEA employees and new recruits, decentralized Headquarters decision-making authority and streamlined Headquarters operations, allowing the redeployment of Special Agents to the field to address the problem of violent drug crimes which negatively affect the quality of life in the United States.

In addition to receiving numerous awards for his contributions to his profession, Mr. Constantine was elected to and served on the Board of Officers for the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) from October 1992 to April 1994. He is currently serving as a member of the IACP Executive Committee and is Chairman of the IACP Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs Committee. In this capacity, he holds a policymaking position in an international organization of police executives dedicated to raising the level of professionalism of law enforcement worldwide.

Mr. Constantine was born on December 23, 1938, in Buffalo, New York. He holds a bachelor's degree from the State University College at Buffalo and a master's degree from the State University of New York at Albany, where he was selected as outstanding graduate student in 1986. He also has completed academic work in a Doctoral Program. Mr. Constantine is married to the former Miss Ruth Cryan, and has six children and nine grandchildren.



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