May 23rd, 2010
09:00 AM ET

Dear Mr. President #489 "Searching for intelligent life"

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/05/21/art.blair.jpg caption="So you are replacing your Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair. Can I make a suggestion? What the next candidate needs is imagination."]

Tom Foreman | BIO
AC360° Correspondent

Reporter's Note: I send a letter every single day to the president in response to his pre-Inauguration request for ideas from the public. So far I’m not sure he’s taken any of my suggestions. But maybe today is the day…

Dear Mr. President,

So you are replacing your Director of National Intelligence, eh? I guess we all so that one coming. An attempted bombing here, a rising threat there, an actual act of violence…a few things like that stack up on your watch and it’s pretty much time to pack the desk.

My question is, what are you looking for in your next one? Can I make a suggestion? I think he or she needs a good deal of experience in the field, some strong leadership qualities; it goes without saying that the next Intel Director should have a deep knowledge of international affairs and all those murky little groups both here and abroad who sit around scheming about how to hurt us. But here is something else he or she needs: Imagination.