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  • Richard McGarrah Helms served as the Director of Central Intelligence from June 1966 to February 1973. Helms began intelligence work with the Office of Strategic Services during World War II. Following the 1947 creation of the Central Intelligence Agency he rose in its ranks during the Truman, Eisenhower, and Kennedy administrations. Helms then served as DCI under Johnson, then Nixon. Helms favored information gathering and its analysis, and counterintelligence, but remained a skeptic about clandestine and paramilitary operations. He saw it as his duty to keep official secrets well guarded. Helms understood his career role as being a person who might express strong opinions over a decision under review, yet in the end working as a team player within the agency, where the President had the final say. While DCI, Helms followed his predecessor McCone in his management of the agency. In 1977, as an indirect result of earlier clandestine operations in Chile, he became the only DCI convicted of misleading Congress. His last post in government service was Ambassador to Iran.

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