Karen Monaghan is an independent national security consultant providing geopolitical, national security, and risk analysis to a range of government and private sector clients. She retired in 2017 from the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) at the rank of Senior Intelligence Officer, earning a Career Intelligence Medal.
Ms. Monaghan earned a BA in political science and economics from Vassar College and completed an MPhil. in international relations at St Antonys College, Oxford University. She began her career at CIA in 1985, initially charged with assessing political and security developments in Namibia and apartheid-era South Africa. During her 32 years at CIA, she served in a myriad of analytic and managerial capacities and covered a range of geographic areas and functional issues.
Twice serving as the National Intelligence Officer for Economics and Global issues, she oversaw several ground breaking transnational intelligence assessments—the National Security Implications of Global Climate Change, Geopolitics of Global Energy, and SARS, Down But Still a Threat. During her last three years at CIA, Ms. Monaghan headed the Russia Department overseeing analysis and collection on a range of economic, political, and security issues related to Russia, including its 2014 incursion into Ukraine, military involvement in Syria, and its interference in the 2016 US elections and other disinformation campaigns.