Terrorism organization names new director

Wednesday, January 25th 2006, 6:08 am
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- The National Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism named a new executive director who said he wants the organization to be the premiere source for information on terrorism.

"What happened in Oklahoma City is uniquely important to the community, and the people of Oklahoma want to share what we have learned so someone else doesn't have to pay that blood tuition," Donald Hamilton said.

Hamilton previously served as deputy and interim director of the institute. The Oklahoma City organization conducted a nationwide search in conjunction with a search firm to find the new director. Retired Gen. Dennis Reimer was director for five years before taking a job in Washington.

"We had an impressive list of candidates interested in the job," said Michael Carolina, search committee chairman and executive director of the Oklahoma Center for the Advancement of Science and Technology. "We had a lot of names of people who are broadly experienced from military, think tanks and higher education. Don certainly brings the kind of experience and background we want for the position."

Hamilton has a long background in foreign affairs and dealing with terrorism. He served as a senior career diplomat in the U.S. Foreign Service and in the State Department's Counterterrorism Office. He also was a senior adviser to the National Commission on Terrorism. Hamilton took a leave of absence from the institute in 2003 to serve as a senior counselor to L. Paul Bremer, administrator of the Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq.

The institute is dedicated to preventing terrorism or mitigating its effects, Hamilton said.

Hamilton said his immediate goal is to make the institute better known in Oklahoma, across the country and worldwide.

"We want to be the first resort for people worldwide looking for that type of information," Hamilton said.