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Foundation Fact Sheet

Mission: The CIA Officers Memorial Foundation's sacred promise to the CIA is to honor the fallen and injured by providing individualized support to their children and spouses. We walk side-by-side with CIA families on their journey of loss and trauma and toward healing and resiliency. We are steadfast in our long-term commitment to help every spouse and child in our program achieve their fullest potential, from "daycare to dream job."

Vision: To support families of CIA officers by relieving financial stress, encouraging educational and career goals and emotionally reconnecting them with the great Agency to which their loved ones served with distinction.


Programs: The Foundation ensures financial assistance for, but not limited to:​​​​

  • Undergraduate college scholarships

  • Scholarships for some Graduate, Vocational, Trade, & Certificate Programs

  • Tutoring Reimbursement & Career Readiness Development

  • Internships

  • Career placement

  • Funding for daycare & camps

  • Counseling reimbursement

History: Action. Responsibility. Leadership. These are words Johnny Micheal “Mike” Spann used to describe himself in his application to the CIA. He took these traits with him when he deployed in the fall of 2001 to Afghanistan as part of the government’s response to the terrorist attacks of September 11th.


Mike was conducting initial interviews of extremists held in Qali-Jangi fortress at Mazar-e Sharif when hundreds of prisoners revolted, and he was attacked. His last act, just before he was killed by those who had supposedly surrendered, was to warn an Agency colleague of the imminent danger, helping his colleague get to safety. Mike was killed on November 25, 2001: The first American killed in combat in Afghanistan. Mike was survived by his wife, infant son, and two young daughters.

In late November 2001, a group of former CIA officers led by Richard Helms, former Director of Central Intelligence, established the CIA Officers Memorial Foundation to honor Mike Spann’s devotion to his country and all other CIA officers who gave their last full measure in service to the Nation since the founding of the Central Intelligence Agency and those who sadly were certain to follow. And thus, a sacred promise was made to provide educational scholarships to the surviving children of those lost in the line of duty then, and in future generations - from that promise the CIA Officers Memorial Foundation traces its roots.

Eligibility: The following individuals are eligible for financial support and services from the Foundation:

  • Children and spouses of CIA officers and contractors who are killed in the line of duty and honored on the Agency Wall of Stars.

  • Children and spouses of CIA officers who died while on active duty from accident, illness or other causes.

  • Children and spouses of CIA officers who died within two years of medical disability retirement. 

  • Children and spouses of CIA officers who are severely wounded or disabled due to service in an Agency-designated war zone.

  • The Foundation will also consider providing other types of support to CIA officers and their families based on specific circumstances and the availability of funds. 


Facts & Statistics: The CIA Officers Memorial Foundation is a non-profit organization qualified as tax exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code (EIN 52-2360463).  We hold a 4-star rating by Charity Navigator and our Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) Number is 40425.  

To date, the Foundation has awarded over $11.5 million in educational scholarships to over 200 dependents of deceased CIA officers. For the 2022-2023 academic year, the Foundation awarded over $2 million to 64 students. What began as a response from the hearts of the American people to the family of CIA officer Micheal Spann has grown into an organization that is a resource to all the men and women of CIA who voluntarily place themselves in harm’s way around the globe. The Foundation serves as a promise to CIA officers that their families will receive our support should a tragedy occur.

Sadly, the requirements for future support for the families of officers who have died in the line of duty continue to grow. Currently there are 73 children and widows who will be eligible for scholarships in future years. The Foundation continues to seek donations from a wide variety of sources to meet those requirements. 

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