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Letter to Members of the President's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board.

May 04, 1961

I am delighted that you have consented to serve as a member of the President's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board which is being reactivated pursuant to the Executive Order which I approved on May 4, 1961.

I am establishing this Board for the purpose of providing me periodically with independent evaluations of the objectives and conduct of U.S. foreign intelligence activities and of the performance of the several agencies engaged in foreign intelligence and related efforts.

It is my desire that the Board should meet periodically to analyze objectively the work of the Government's foreign intelligence agencies. While the review by the Board will be concerned with all U.S. foreign intelligence activities, I would expect particular attention to be devoted to the performance of those civilian and military intelligence elements of key importance to the Government in the fields of national security and foreign relations. I am especially anxious to obtain the Board's views as to the over-all conduct and progress of the foreign intelligence effort as well as its advice as to any modifications therein which would enhance the acquisition of intelligence essential to the policy making branches of the Government in the areas of national security and foreign relations.

It is my hope that you and the others whom I have invited to serve on the Board will be able to meet with me on May 15, 1961, to discuss in detail the scope of the work which you have so generously agreed to undertake.

I know that you and your fellow Board members can make a real contribution to the national interest by your service with this body.



Note: This is the text of identical letters addressed to Dr. James R. Killian, Jr., Chairman of the Board; Dr. William O. Baker, Vice President, Research, Bell Telephone Laboratories; Lt. Gen. James H. Doolittle, USAF (ret.), Chairman of the Board, Space Technology Laboratories, Inc.; Dr. William L. Langer, Professor of History, Harvard University; Robert D. Murphy, President, Corning Glass International; and Gen. Maxwell Taylor, USA (ret.), President, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, Inc. Later, on May 15, Clark M. Clifford and Gordon Gray were appointed members of the Board.

John F. Kennedy, Letter to Members of the President's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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