We Are Your FBI

Employment numbers say the FBI is still a white man's world

Despite the FBI's generation-long public relations campaign to bury the image of the corn-fed, crew-cut G-Man, the Bureau's legacy as a white man's redoubt remains largely intact. It was not until the month after J. Edgar Hoover's death in 1972 that the FBI training academy (located on the Marine base at Quantico, Virginia) admitted its first female applicant. When Jane Turner attended the academy in 1978, sherecalls, "They still counted race and gender. I was female agent number 100-and-something. And I was in class with the number 6 Native American."

According to Turner, the modern FBI takes care to put women and minorities in visible positions such as media liaison at HQ and in the field offices. Outside public view, the picture has changed less than the Bureau might like to suggest. The following numbers were compiled from the 2000 U.S. Census and from employment data at the FBI's website dating to June 30, 2003.

By the numbers:

White men

as a percentage of U.S. population: 36.8
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as a percentage of FBI agents: 68.1
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African Americans

as a percentage of U.S. population: 12.9
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as a percentage of FBI agents: 5.5
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Hispanics

as a percentage of U.S. population: 12.5
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as a percentage of FBI agents: 7.4
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Asian Americans

as a percentage of U.S. population: 3.6
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as a percentage of FBI agents: 3.2
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Native Americans

as a percentage of U.S. population: .9
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as a percentage of FBI agents: .4
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Women

as a percentage of FBI agents: 18.1
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as a percentage of FBI support/clerical personnel: 66.9
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nonwhite women as a percentage of FBI agents: 3.0
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nonwhite women as a percentage of FBI support/clerical personnel: 23.3
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FBI Executive Staff

women as a percentage of the administrative and public information executives in Director Robert Mueller's office: 61.5
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women as a percentage of assistant directors and executive assistant directors: 9.5
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