Content Block Preview: Bios (10:30 am) Careers@State: Diplomacy that Protects the World

Careers@State: Diplomacy that Protects the World

Carlos Matus is a special agent with the Bureau of Diplomatic Security (DS), currently serving as the first Hispanic principal deputy assistant secretary for the bureau and director of the Diplomatic Security Service. DS is responsible for leading worldwide security and law enforcement efforts to advance U.S. foreign policy and safeguard U.S. national security interests. Matus is a 34-year veteran of the State Department and a career member of the Senior Foreign Service with the rank of minister-counselor. He has served in more than 17 domestic and overseas assignments.





Isabel Romero is a security program officer in the Bureau of Diplomatic Security’s Office of Overseas Protective Operations. She implements policy standards and provides management oversight for local guard programs at embassies in the Western Hemisphere. Her portfolio covers Bolivia, Costa Rica, Peru, Canada, the Dominican Republic, Guyana and Honduras.  Romero started her State Department career as an unpaid intern at the Foreign Service Institute. She worked as a program analyst within the Bureau of Conflict and Stabilization Operations, supporting Afghanistan and Iraq Familiarization courses, and in the Consular Training Division supporting mid- and senior-level consular courses. She holds a master’s degree in international security and a bachelor’s degree in global affairs from George Mason University. Romero is the former president of the HECFAA executive board, where she worked on the recruitment, retention and promotion of Hispanics within the State Department.




Maria Amaya is a special agent serving as the deputy to the Functional Training Operations (FTO) Division at the Foreign Affairs Security Training Center in Blackstone, Virginia. She is responsible for the six functional training units that provide training to the Diplomatic Security Service’s special agents from their initial Basic Special Agent Candidate course through the remainder of their career. Driving, firearms, operational medicine, explosives, room entry defensive tactics and fire as a weapon are the six units housed by FTO. She has served in Slovakia, Afghanistan, New York and Seattle. Prior to working in DS, she was a special agent with Homeland Security Investigations, a police officer and a detective near Seattle. She also spent nine years in the military. Amaya immigrated to the United States at a very young age; she and her family are from Colombia.




Alberto Cruz is a special agent with the Bureau of Diplomatic Security. He was born and raised in New York City to Puerto Rican parents. Cruz has a bachelor’s degree in business administration and a master’s degree in accounting and financial management. 

He is currently serving as an assistant regional security officer at the U.S. Embassy in Bogotá, Colombia. His previous postings include the New York Field Office, the San Juan Resident Office in Puerto Rico, the U.S. Embassy in Rangoon, Burma, and the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad.





Brianna E. May has been a special agent with the Bureau of Diplomatic Security since 2013. She is currently in language training studying Burmese for her next assignment as an assistant regional security officer (ARSO) at the U.S. Embassy in Burma. Her previous assignments include ARSO investigator at the U.S. Consulate General in Shenyang, China, ARSO at the U.S. Embassy in Manama, Bahrain, and special agent at the Boston Field Office. Prior to joining the Diplomatic Security Service, May worked in the human resource office at the U.S. Embassy in New Delhi. She earned her undergraduate degree from the College of William & Mary.





Damaris Garcia, chief of field support logistics, joined the State Department after graduating with a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from the University of Puerto Rico. Her 21-year service in the Bureau of Diplomatic Security has taken her to assignments in China, Greece, Sweden and Pakistan, as well as diverse tours in the Washington area. She completed her master’s degree in strategic intelligence at the National Defense Intelligence College (now the National Intelligence University).  

Most recently, Garcia teamed up with other colleagues to create the Women in Security Engineering (WISE) affinity group, which provides support and advocacy for their members, as well as community involvement. She previously chaired the DS Diversity Working Group and served as representative for the DS Training Directorate, working closely with the head of the Diplomatic Security Service . She is currently a member of the DS Peer Support Group.