morning. Thank you, Rob, for that introduction. It
is an honor to be here. Thank you to all the local
officials and members of law enforcement who are here.
You are our friends and partners. In particular, I
want to recognize Congressman Danny Davis; Chief Judges
Joel Flaum, James Holderman, and Eugene Wedoff; U.S.
Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald; State Police Director
Larry Trent; Sheriff Kenneth Ramsey; and Police Chief
would also like to mention someone who could not make
it today. Chicago Police Superintendent Phillip Cline
wished to be here, but he is hosting a dedication
for the "Gold Star Memorial" to honor those
officers who gave their lives in the line of duty.
For generations to come, that memorial will serve
as a reminder to all of us of their ultimate sacrifice.
I understand Mayor Daley is also expected there later,
and we thank him for joining us.
also have a number of former agents with us, including
John Jarmul and his wife, Marie. John is the most
senior retired special agent in the Chicago area.
He served as an applicant recruiter in the 1950s.
John, with all the hiring we are doing, we could sure
use your help today. Truly, it means a great deal
to us that you both are here as we dedicate a new
Chicago Field Office of the FBI.
also want to point out Alston Purvis, an associate
professor at Boston University and son of legendary
Special Agent Melvin Purvis. As the special-agent-in-charge
of the Chicago office, Melvin Purvis fought some of
the most notorious outlaws in our nation's history.
was the era of John Dillinger and Baby Face Nelson,
and gangsters like them, who avoided capture by fleeing
over state lines. In response, the jurisdiction of
the FBI was expanded to address the threat posed by
a perceived gangster crime wave.
world of threats has changed dramatically since the
days of Dillinger and Nelson. Since then, globalization
has made the world smaller. Air travel and technology
have allowed crime and terrorism to expand far beyond
local and national borders.
hackers can target us from anywhere in the world.
Terrorists use the Internet to spread their message
of hate across the globe. And organized crime operates
from Anchorage to Azerbaijan and from Tampa to Tokyo.
this world of threats, the prevention of another terrorist
attack is our number one priority. We are particularly
concerned about the threat of homegrown terrorist
cells. Over the past five years, we have worked extremely
hardboth at home and abroadto strengthen
our ability to detect and deter terrorism.
as we fight the war on terrorism, we face a wider
range of threats than ever before. Today, we confront
violent gangs, corrupt corporations, sexual predators
of children, and sophisticated spies, just to mention
succeed against these new and evolving threats, we
must work together as never before.
me give an example. A recent joint investigation with
the Chicago Police Department is a model for improved
cooperation between local law enforcement and the
FBI. In 2004, the Chicago Police began investigating
drug dealers at a notorious open air market. For decades,
they had operated at a housing complex on the west
side, known as "The Square."
Chicago Police Department reached out to us, and together,
we developed a strategy. The FBI would investigate
the leadership and the organization of the "New
Breeds" gang running the Square. The Chicago
Police would continue to target the retail drug dealers
joint investigation managed to tie low-level drug
dealers to the gang's leadership. With our two agencies
using each of our investigative strengths, the result
was the largest single gang takedown in the history
of the Chicago FBI.
May 9 of this year, 53 gang members were arrested
and charged with conspiracy to distribute, along with
nine others who face related charges.
cooperation extends across the board. To strengthen
our efforts against terrorism, we have increased our
Joint Terrorism Task Forces from 35 to over 100. In
Chicago, 17 participating agencies work as a team
to investigate each and every terrorism lead. The
Joint Terrorism Task Force has broken up terrorist
financing rings and made it harder for terrorists
have also strengthened our partnerships with smaller
police departments who are not on the JTTF. We have
brought them on-line in a secure environment, and
we are now regularly pushing intelligence out to them.
Commander Jim Zimmerman, from the Niles Police Department,
is heading our efforts to provide terrorism training
and intelligence to over 300 area police departments.
this case and many others, working with our partners
has meant success. Together, we have taken violent
gangs off the streets, disrupted hate crimes, captured
software pirates, uncovered public corruption, and
made it harder for terrorists to carry out their deadly
commend the men and women of the Chicago field office
for doing their part to ensure that in this great
nation crime does not pay, corruption does not prosper,
and fear does not prevail.
dedication of FBI employees is always a great source
of pride for me. It is immensely gratifying to work
with individuals who are committed to doing all they
can to protect America. And I think there is not one
of us who, when asked, is not proud to say we work
at the FBI.
America is safer, and Chicago is safer, than we were
before the attacks of September 11. But we are still
our history, the FBI has always adapted to new threats.
Today, the threat of terrorism requires us to be the
best law enforcement and national security agency
we can be. This new building, in the heart of the
Medical District, is a flagship for our new mission.
can tell you that many of our employees here thought
it was high time we built a new office. Our operations
were located at five different sites, and, even then,
overcrowding was a problem. Technical connections
were challenged by the age of the buildings and their
design. Indeed, I am told that it was not unusual
for the temperature to swing from the ice age to global
warming in a matter of hours.
more than double the previous space, Chicago is the
largest stand-alone FBI field office in the country.
Improvements include tighter security and upgraded
technology that will give employees the support and
efficiency they deserve.
you to Deborah Orkowski from GSA; Debra Schug, from
FBI headquarters; and Chicago employees Barbara Valocik,
Michael Triem, and Brad Fister for contributing enormous
time and energy to this project.
this building, today's FBI is stronger, more flexible,
and more modern-able to meet whatever challenges
you, and God bless you.