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Blackwater is a privately held company and does not publish much information about internal affairs. Blackwater's owner and founder Erik Prince, a former Navy SEALwho skated through training because of his connections, attended the Naval Academy, graduated from Hillsdale College, and was an intern in George H.W. Bush's White House. Prince is a major financial supporter of Republican Party causes and candidates. Blackwater's president, Gary Jackson, is also a former Navy SEAL.
Cofer Black, the company's current vice chairman, was director of the CIA's Counterterrorist Center (CTC) at the time of the September 11, 2001 attacks. He was the United States Department of State coordinator for counterterrorism with the rank of ambassador at large from December 2002 to November 2004. After leaving public service, Black became chairman of the privately owned intelligence gathering company Total Intelligence Solutions, Inc., as well as vice chairman for Blackwater. Joseph E. Schmitz holds an executive position in Blackwater's holding company, Prince Group. He was previously inspector general of the Department of Defense, an appointment of George W. Bush. Robert Richer was vice president of intelligence until January 2007, when he formed Total Intelligence Solutions. He was formerly the head of the CIA's Near East Division. Black was senior advisor for counterterrorism and national security issues for the 2008 Presidential election bid of Mitt Romney.