Ann Z. Caracristi

cryptanalyst, former Deputy Director of the National Security Agency

Ann Zeilinger Caracristi (February 1, 1921 – January 10, 2016) was an American cryptanalyst. She was the former Deputy Director of the National Security Agency,[1] where she served at many positions over a 40-year career. She served as a member of the Secretary of Defense Joint Security Commission and President's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board. She became the first woman at NSA to be promoted to GS-18 rank, in 1975. She was born in Bronxville, New York.[2]

Ann Z. Caracristi
Deputy Director of the NSA
In office
1 April 1980 – 30 July 1982
Preceded byRobert E. Drake
Succeeded byRobert E. Rich
Personal details
Ann Zeilinger Caracristi

(1921-02-01)February 1, 1921
Bronxville, New York, U.S.
DiedJanuary 10, 2016(2016-01-10) (aged 94)
Washington, D.C., U.S.
Alma materRussell Sage College, Federal Executive Institute
Professioncryptanalyst, intelligence consultant and official

In 2002, her name was given to a Naval Intelligence Professionals' award.[3] Caracristi died January 10, 2016, in Washington, D.C. from complications of dementia at the age of 94.[4]


  1. Former Deputy Directors Archived 2009-01-14 at the Wayback Machine NSA website.
  2. Who's who of American women. Marquis Who's Who. 1973. ISBN 9780837904085. Retrieved 2015-04-13.
  3. Ann Caracristi Award Archived 2007-06-26 at the Wayback Machine on the Naval Intelligence website
  4. Weil, Martin (2016-01-11). "Ann Caracristi, who excelled at code-breaking and management, dies at 94". The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2016-01-11.