Julia Pierson has been sworn in as the head of the U.S. Secret Service, the agency that protects the president and his family.
The official ceremony took place Wednesday at the White House with President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden officiating.
Obama said Pierson has had an exemplary 30-year career with the agency and is highly qualified for the job.
"I have to say that Julia’s reputation within the service is extraordinary. She’s come up throughout the ranks, she’s done just about every job there is to do at the Secret Service," he said. "Obviously, she’s broken the mold in terms of directors of the agency and I think that people are all extraordinarily proud of her. And we have the greatest confidence in the wonderful task that lies ahead and are very confident that she is doing to do a great job."
Along with protecting the president, the Secret Service's duties include investigating counterfeiting, credit card fraud, and other financial crimes.
Pierson has been chief of staff in the Secret Service director’s office in Washington since 2008, where her main areas of responsibility were technology and modernization. Over three decades, beginning as a special agent in Miami, she has held a wide variety of protective and investigative assignments and served as deputy assistant director in the Office of Protective Operations.
The U.S. Secret Service has about 3,500 agents.