Webster Rehires 31-Year Veteran for Key CIA Post

Associated Press

CIA Director William H. Webster announced today he has hired Richard F. Stolz, a 31-year veteran of agency spy operations, out of retirement to become deputy director for operations.

Stolz, 62, will replace Clair E. George at the end of the year as chief of the CIA’s clandestine service, which both collects foreign intelligence and mounts covert actions designed to influence events abroad.

George announced his retirement Nov. 25, at a time that his role in the Iran-Contra scandal was under review by Russell J. Bruemmer, a special counsel named by Webster to advise him on whether to take disciplinary action against any agency employees over their participation in Iran-Contra matters.

Webster’s announcement noted that Stolz retired from the CIA in 1981--before any of the Iran-Contra activities that have been the subject of investigations by a presidential commission, two special congressional committees and independent counsel Lawrence E. Walsh.


31 Years With CIA

Webster said Stolz had spent 31 years in the CIA, more than half of them overseas. The agency would not disclose his previous postings but said he retired from a senior position.

“Dick Stolz’s strong background in the operations side of this agency eminently qualifies him to fill this most important position,” Webster said. “His operational experience and management skills were an asset to this agency and will be once again. I welcome him back on board.”

Webster said that since leaving the agency Stolz has been employed in private business as a consultant, including work for the national security community.


Stolz is a 1949 graduate of Amherst College, the alma mater of Webster, who was graduated in 1947.