National Counterterrorism Center


National Counterterrorism Center

Christine Abizaid

Christine Abizaid


Christine “Christy” Abizaid has served as the Director of the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC) since June 29, 2021. She is the eighth Senate-confirmed Director and the first woman to lead NCTC, the United States Government’s primary organization that integrates, analyzes, and shares counterterrorism information to address the persistent and evolving threat environment.


During the Obama Administration, Abizaid was the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Central Asia. Prior to joining the Office of the Secretary of Defense, she served on the National Security Council Staff as both Director for Counterterrorism and Senior Policy Advisor to the Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism.


Before returning to government service, Abizaid was as an executive at Dell Technologies in its Global Operations organization, where she led supply chain assurance initiatives.


Abizaid began her government career at the Defense Intelligence Agency’s (DIA) Joint Intelligence Task Force Combating Terrorism, and served for seven years to include time as the Senior Intelligence Analyst in the Afghanistan-Pakistan Division and the Iraq/Middle East Division. She deployed several times throughout the Middle East, including a tour as the senior DIA counterterrorism representative in Iraq.


Abizaid has received the Office of the Director of National Intelligence Award, the National Military Intelligence Association John T. Hughes Award, and the DIA Meritorious Civilian Service Award. Abizaid holds a B.A. in psychology from the University of California, San Diego, and an M.A. in international policy studies from Stanford University.


Any suspected criminal or terrorist activity should be reported to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

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Mailing Address


National Counterterrorism Center
Washington, DC 20511


Celia Durall

Celia Durall


Celia Durall started as the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC) Executive Director on October 24, 2022. She previously served as the Chief, Senior Executive Management Office. In that role, Ms. Durall led the delivery of strategic level executive management support to all executives at ODNI.


In 2021, Ms. Durall was selected as Acting Chief of the IC Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Office. After standing up this new office, she served as the principal advisor to the Director and Principal Deputy Director of National Intelligence on diversity, equity and inclusion. She synchronized and advanced diversity, equity and inclusion activities, policies and programs across the IC, bringing transparency to these initiatives. Previously, Ms. Durall was appointed as Deputy Assistant Director of National Intelligence for IC Human Capital, where she led the design, development and execution of human resources strategies, plans and policies in support of the men and women who serve in our nation’s intelligence agencies. She was also the first Chief, Intelligence Workforce Development Section at the Federal Bureau of Investigation.


At FBI and in other leadership roles at DIA and ODNI, Ms. Durall has been known as a groundbreaking leader and innovator who enables institutional change and promotes community building to enhance organizational adaptability in a complex and rapidly changing national security environment.


Ms. Durall started her intelligence career as a linguist and then transitioned into the analytic career field at DIA. She earned a Master of Arts in International Trade from George Mason University, a Paralegal Certificate in International Trade Law from the American University in Paris and a Bachelor of Arts in French Language and Civilization with a concentration in Business from the University of Maryland. After 15 years in federal service, she spent several years at a behavioral social science firm working with tools to capture and catalyze organizational effectiveness and individual development. She is an ICF certified leadership coach committed to developing great leaders. Ms. Durall has over 30 years of broad experience in intelligence, organizational development and human capital. She and her husband, Brian, raised two children in Montgomery County, Maryland.



Don Holstead NCTC

Don Holstead


Don M. Holstead joined NCTC as its Deputy Director in March 2024. Prior to that, he spent 20 years at FBI, most recently serving as Deputy Assistant Director of its Counterterrorism Division. He has diverse counterterrorism experience against ISIS, al-Qa’ida, and Iran; has established and enhanced partnerships with State, Local, Tribal, and Territorial elements; and has managed processes to use bulk data to score the risk threat actors pose.


Mr. Holstead joined the FBI as a special agent in 2004, and rose in the ranks to serve in numerous leadership positions there, including Deputy Director for Law Enforcement to the Joint Special Operations Command Interagency Task Force; National Capitol Region and Assistant Section Chief; Section Chief of the Target Discovery Section of the Counterterrorism Intelligence Branch; and National Security Assistant Special Agent in Charge with oversight of all cyber, counterterrorism, counterintelligence, and weapons of mass destruction programs in Denver’s National Security Branch. He was also selected to stand up a new section in the FBI's Counterterrorism Division, designated the Special Threats Section, to address threats posed by state sponsors and complex threat networks. As a member of San Antonio Division’s Crisis Negotiator Team, he deployed to Afghanistan in support of efforts to recover American hostages held by Foreign Terrorist Organizations.


Prior to his federal service, he spent more than a decade in Special Operations in the U.S. Army. He has a Master’s of Business Organizational Leadership from George Washington University.