SpyCast 7.18.23
Ep 594 | 7.18.23

“Leader, Lecturer, Analyzer, Nerd” – with Jorhena Thomas

Show Notes


Jorhena Thomas (LinkedIn) joins Andrew (TwitterLinkedIn) to discuss her career as an analyst and passion for intelligence education. Jorhena spent 8 years in the FBI as an Intelligence Analyst. 

*Nominate SpyCast for a People’s Choice Podcast Award HERE!

What You’ll Learn


  • What makes a great analyst
  • Her thoughts on the “Intelligence Cycle”
  • The Robert Levinson case 
  • How the FBI adapted after 9/11


  • Teamwork and collaboration 
  • The importance of education

And much, much more …

Episode Notes

This week on SpyCast, Andrew was joined by Jorhena Thomas: educator, mentor, and analysis extraordinaire. It was a pleasure to have Jorhena in the studio to discuss to her career, which began at the Federal Bureau of Investigation where she served as an intelligence analyst for 8 years. She moved on to work at the Washington D.C. Fusion Center, the District of Columbia Deputy Mayor’s Office, and in private consulting. She currently lectures at both American University and Georgetown University, and serves as the Director of Mentorship and Professional Advancement at Girl Security.


Women make up 59% (more than half!) of the FBI’s Intelligence Analysis workforce. This has come along way since the first female FBI special agents, Joanna Pierce Misko and Susan Roley Malone, were hired in 1972. However, the work is not done. SpyCast is proud to highlight Jorhena’s work with Girl Security, supporting, mentoring, and training the next generations of women in intelligence. 

Quotes of the Week

“All my time with the FBI really gave me an appreciation for partnerships, and understanding everyone has a role to play. And if you respect what they do and they respect what you do, then you can really get some good work done. And I think sometimes people look down on others who don't do what they do. And my attitude is, if they did what you do, then you don't need to be here” – Jorhena Thomas




*Beginner Resources*



  • How Spies Think: Ten Lessons in Intelligence, D. Omand (Penguin, 2020) 
  • Psychology of Intelligence Analysis, R. J. Heuer (Echo Point, 2017) 
  • Reducing Uncertainty: Intelligence Analysis & National Security, T. Fingar (SUP, 2011)
  • The FBI: A History, R. Jefferys-Jones (Yale, 2007)



Primary Sources 

*Wildcard Resource*

  • Looking for a new show to watch? Try Quantico, a show about a group of young new FBI recruits training at the Quantico base in Virginia. Dramatized, of course!