Because "no single agency has the answer," the advantage of this varied staff is the ability to learn from each other and leverage the expertise, best practices and contacts the personnel bring to the table. "The beauty of this place is we are able to draw on the expertise of each of the different agencies because everybody works under the same roof," says Bucella.
In the future Bucella hopes to increase the local law enforcement presence in the TSC by adding a local law enforcement representative to her leadership team as an associate director. "We want to make sure that people from our law enforcement community are included and not excluded," she says. "We've made tremendous strides with the cooperation of people, not in spite of everybody."
The key to the future success of the TSC is continuing this cooperative effort. "I'm surprised it didn't happen before, but I really think it was not because people weren't willing," notes Bucella. "I think people were operating in different worlds and didn't necessarily know how to communicate.
"At the Terrorist Screening Center, we're just encouraging everybody to talk both ways. We're the operator. We hook people up from one line to another."
And this information sharing is both producing "Terrorist plot foiled" headlines and saving lives. As Bucella says, "This information could not only save the officer's life, it could save thousands of other lives, and that is why we encourage people to give us a call."