Intelligence Community Officer (ICO) Programs

[04 February 2000]

1. References to Authorities

Pursuant to Section 113, 104(f) and 103(c) of the National Security Act of 1947, as amended, 50 U.S.C. 401 et seq., and consistent with the provisions of the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) between the Director of Central Intelligence and the Deputy Secretary of Defense (titled "Intelligence Community Assignment Program", dated 17 January 1997), this directive establishes the Intelligence Community Officer (ICO) programs. Applicable provisions cited in DCID 1/1 (19 November 1998) are included by reference.

2. Purpose

This directive establishes policy and assigns responsibility for the Intelligence Community Officer (ICO) programs. The ICO designation is designed to develop the future leadership of the Intelligence Community (IC) through a program of rotational assignments, training and experience, and related guidelines to promote a wider understanding of IC missions and functions; bolster IC coordination; and enhance the effectiveness of the Community. Other policies regarding the implementation, management, and administration of the program will be detailed in the DCID implementation guidelines and Department of Defense (DoD) regulations. Within DoD, these policies will be further elaborated through the DoD Directives System.

3. Policy

The ICO programs are designed to foster development of an intelligence professional with Community experience, Community perspective and applied expertise. These programs develop Intelligence Community professionals by providing defined opportunities to expose them to at least one intelligence organization other than his or her parent organization, as well as to the entire spectrum of IC functions and supporting elements. The programs lead to ICO designation, which is contingent upon successful completion of the three program components as follows:

  • Intelligence Community Assignment Program (ICAP) or ICAP-Equivalent assignment(s)

  • Intelligence Community Officer Training (ICOT)

  • Organizations Career Development Programs (OCDP)

Intelligence Community agencies and elements shall implement policies in a manner consistent with making the ICO designation a required factor for consideration for promotion eligibility into Defense Intelligence Senior Executive Service (DISES), Senior Intelligence Service (SIS) or equivalent level positions beginning in FY2002.

In FY2003, this DCID shall be reviewed for revisions based on lessons learned to date. In particular, modifications for career fields requiring special consideration shall be considered. Subject to DCI review in FY2003, beginning in FY2005, the ICO designation shall be mandatory for promotion eligibility into SIS. The Secretary of Defense has determined that these shall be mandatory requirements for DISES and equivalent level positions beginning in FY2005, if adopted by the DCI review in FY2003. Other IC components appointed under Title 5 US Code may implement as appropriate.

Waivers will be granted by heads of agencies wherein designation as an ICO is not applicable because of cover or other equally imperative necessity. The ICO programs provide the IC with a means of developing well-rounded senior intelligence professionals with a broad community customer perspective.

  • ICAP: The ICAP provides civilian intelligence personnel with an opportunity to gain grade 13 level or above IC experience and perspective through rotational assignments to intelligence-related positions external to the participants' parent organizations. ICAP is an IC managed program designed specifically to promote and facilitate two to three year rotations across the entire spectrum of IC functions, elements, and geographic locations. To participate in ICAP, candidates self-nominate and are endorsed by the parent organization. Selection into an ICAP position will be through a merit-based competitive process. ICAP rotations can be on a reimbursable or non-reimbursable basis. If on a non-reimbursable basis, the rotation may not exceed three years unless the heads of the parent and host agencies determine that such extension is in the public interest. If such a determination is made, a rotation may be extended for a period not to exceed one year. Equivalent alternative Community broadening assignments now in use, or to be developed by individual IC agencies can also accomplish this goal. (See ICAP-Equivalent definition in Appendix.)

  • ICOT: Participants in the Intelligence Community Officer Training program shall complete the curriculum approved by the ICO/ICAP Board of Governors (BoG).

  • OCDP: Participating organizations' career development policies shall incorporate the ICO programs in their agency-specific senior-level employee development policies and programs.

4. Responsibilities

This section identifies key entities responsible for carrying out the ICO programs Directive.

ICO/ICAP Board of Governors

The Board of Governors (BoG) shall establish program parameters; approve designated and equivalent ICO programs and validate assignments; provide oversight for program implementation, evaluation, and modification; monitor interrelationships and resolve disputes between Host and Parent agencies; and recommend alternatives to the DEPSECDEF and DCI as necessary to enhance program participation and effectiveness. The Board shall consist of one senior representative (DISES/SIS, or equivalent) from each participating agency, as designated by the agency Head. The Board will be led by a Chair and Deputy selected by the DDCI/CM and the ASD/C3I. The Board shall carry out its duties and responsibilities in a manner that maximizes each participating organization's administrative and programmatic autonomy.

ICO Director

The ICO Director shall be responsible to the BoG for overall program guidance and development. The ICO Director keeps the DASD(I) and the ExDir/ICA informed for purposes of the ICO programs. The ICO Director is authorized to levy tasks, organize working groups, collect and maintain data, and take action on behalf of the BoG to resolve ICO and component program issues.

ICAP Executive Secretariat

The ICAP Executive Secretariat (ICAP ES) shall provide ICAP program and administrative support to the BoG. The ICAP Executive Secretary shall levy tasks, organize working groups, collect and maintain data, and take action on behalf of the BoG to resolve ICAP issues.

Participating Organizations

Participating organizations of the Intelligence Community shall incorporate designated and equivalent ICO programs into their agency-specific senior-level employee development policies and programs; provide pertinent data requested by the BoG, ICAP ES, and the ICO Director. These organizations shall market and publicize the ICO designation and component programs to ensure the widest possible dissemination of information, including vacancy announcements, and shall lead and/or participate in various Community-sponsored marketing and promotional activities. Participating organizations will certify ICO designation for their employees based on minimum definitive criteria established by the BoG. The ICO/ICAP representative of each participating agency will also be responsible for oversight and monitoring of the ICO Training Program for their organization.

5. Applicability

The ICO programs shall apply to civilian intelligence personnel in participating organizations.

//signed// 04 February 2000
Director of Central Intelligence Date