Meet ‘Tai’: The First Black Woman Selected By FBI To Join A Bureau SWAT Team

Meet 'Tai': The First Black Woman Selected By FBI To Join A Bureau SWAT Team

Black girl magic is in full swing and we can’t help but cheer on one of our very own taking on the male dominated field, changing the game.

history is being rewritten as the FBI
has brought on its first Black woman to be selected to train for the bureau’s SWAT teams.

The special agent, only identified as Tai, 32, will be undergoing New Operator Training School (NOTS), a 10-week course that prepares selectees for SWAT field operations, the FBI said in a news release.

If Tai scales through NOTS, she will join the San Juan Division’s SWAT team as a probationary member and proceed on more training in under two years, to become ingrained as an officially certified member of the bureau, according to the FBI.

Feeling pressure isn’t Tai’s thing; her head remains focused with eyes on the prize: passing NOTS. The course is aimed at improving an agent’s firearm skills, body movement, and critical thinking during stressful situations.

“I’m one of those people where I have a task at hand and I just focus on that task,” she said in the release. “I don’t really think about people looking at me.”

“Hopefully somebody will see that I was able to do it,” Tai added. “I’m not the biggest person. I’m not as strong as some of these guys. But as long as you have perseverance — because it does get really tough — you push through it and keep going.”

FBI has 56 field offices, each with a SWAT team, which stands for “Special Weapons and Tactics”.

San Juan SWAT Senior Team Leader Mike Dubravetz “sees a lot of promise in Tai,” according to the release, adding, “There are no guarantees for success, but she’s been willing to tackle this.”

“I’m impressed with her performance. She wouldn’t have made it through the selection process if she didn’t demonstrate that she has what it takes to be successful.”

Tai has been working at the FBI’s field office since becoming an agent four years ago, focusing on “corruption cases involving non-elected officials.”

Tai is also a soldier in the US Army Reserve, who was inspired to join the FBI after seeing the bureau’s response to the 2016 mass shooting at Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida. The shooting at the popular LGBTQ+ venue was one of the deadliest events in US history, leaving 49 people dead and dozens injured.

“The amount of assets and the professional attitude of agents,” Tai said, remarking about the incident. “They were organized, and they got stuff done.”

Tai was a deputy with the Orange County Sheriff’s Office in Orlando for five years. Focused on doing what’s best for her community both in Florida and Puerto Rico, Tai said, “I like to help. Even on patrol, I’d always say that jail isn’t always the answer.” “Sometimes someone just needs to be listened to or things can be worked out. That’s just part of listening and trying to help the community that I was serving.”

Later this year, Tai will return to NOTS with a new set of selectees to complete her training

“I’m definitely thankful for all the Black women before me in the FBI,” she said. “Because if it didn’t start with that one, who knows how many there would be today if any. I’m definitely grateful for all of them before me.”

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