Station chief

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Station chief is a term for certain officials who are appointed as chief of a 'station', i.e. a stationary post, usually in a foreign or unexplored land.


In English, a description for the factor of a colonial factory's 1603 established English station Bantam, which in March 1609 formally became a Factory, but remained under a Chief factor until its promotion in 1617 to Presidency of Bantam)

Furthermore as close rendering of the German equivalent Stationsleiter ('station leader'), notably in South Sea Schutzgebiete (colonial possessions).

Finally it occurs as loose rendering of the Dutch and Danish equivalents, Opperhoofd viz. Opperhoved.

  • Manager of a scientific (research) station, e.g. for the International Geophysical Year (IGY) on Jarvis Island, an uninhabited minor U.S. Pacific island possession.


The Station Chief, also called Chief of Station, is the top U.S. Central Intelligence Agency official stationed in a foreign country who manages all CIA operations in that country, equivalent to a KGB Resident. The station chief is often a senior U.S. intelligence officer who represents the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) in his or her respective foreign government, whose true name is known to the host nation and other intelligence agencies.[1] [2] The term "station chief" is sensitive enough, however, that former officers usually are not allowed to use it in their resumes in connection with specific countries, even after their covers have been lifted. [2]

See List of CIA Station Chiefs.