Mel Gamble

A retired Senior Intelligence officer, Mr. Gamble served in senior executive positions in the Directorate of Operations in the Central Intelligence Agency to include:  Chief and Deputy Chief of Stations in Africa and Latin America; Chief of Central Asia and the Caucasus; Special Assistant to the Associate Deputy Director of Operations; Deputy Chief of European Division, and Chief of Africa Division.   Mr. Gamble has a B.A. in History from Howard University and a B.S. in International Public Administration from the University of Southern California.  Mr. Gamble received numerous performance awards and, upon retirement, the Distinguished Certificate of Intelligence Medal, and the Director of CIA Award.   He is currently President of Gamble Advisory Group, a security consulting firm.  He also serves as an advisor for security matters on the Boards of two Wall Street firms.

Presentation Topics

Recruitment is Key: Professionalizing the Process

The CIA hopes to bring on the best of the best, but how do you ensure a good fit? Recruiters and hiring managers often look for people like them, with similar backgrounds, skills, and experiences. That is not always the best strategy, argues former CIA Chief of the Directorate of Operations Recruitment Center Mel Gamble. In this talk, Gamble illustrates how he helped improved the recruitment process at the agency and provides advice on what to look for in a new hire.

The Parent Trap: What to Tell your Kids when you Work at the CIA

Mel Gamble’s dad worked for the CIA and wanted him to follow in his footsteps. At first Mel resisted, but now he has over 40 years of experience with the agency. Gamble talks about what it was like having a parent work for a secretive government agency and what it’s like on the other side now that he has children of his own. How much do you share and how much do you conceal? Find out in this personal discussion about family and career.

Black Ops: Improving POC Recruitment, Retainment and Advancement in the IC

Other intelligence agencies in the United States began diversity training and recruitment practices much earlier than the CIA. Why? In this discussion, Mel Gamble remembers his long and less-than-conventional path towards joining the CIA and how he was able to help improve the culture and working conditions of other minorities entering the agency after him.

Where White Men Can’t Go

During Mel Gamble’s decades long career in the CIA, leadership began understanding that white men were not always the best suited for every operational mission they conducted. A recruitment push was underway for Middle Easterners, African Americans, Latinos, Asians, and women who could more easily blend into foreign environments. Hear Mel Gamble talk about his time as the CIA’s Chief of the Africa Division, including stints as senior intelligence representative in Burkina Faso and South Africa as well as time in Nigeria, Kenya, and Liberia. 

On The Road

Come learn about what it’s like to work internationally as an intelligence operative. Mel Gamble has served in a number of senior executive positions in the Directorate of Operations at the CIA internationally. Some roles include Chief and Deputy Chief of Stations in Africa and Latin America, Chief of Central Asia and the Caucasus, Deputy Chief of European Division, and Chief of Africa Division. In this session, Gamble explores operations practices in these foreign posts and his counterterrorism and counternarcotics work abroad. 

Making Sense of the Headlines

It is time to bring in the expert. Mel Gamble is a 40-year retired Senior Intelligence Officer with the Central Intelligence Agency and is currently President of the Gamble Advisory Group, a security consulting firm. Join Gamble in a frank discussion about some of the major national security and espionage headlines in the news today, from all over the world. He will draw on his expertise and personal experience to help decode the stories in today’s newspapers.

Mel Gamble is available to speak at your event virtually or in-person. Contact our sales team for more information.