Robert Dowling named 2018 Distinguished Alumnus

The Centralia College Foundation is honored to announce Robert Dowling, a 1979 attendee of Centralia College, is the 2018 Distinguished Alumnus.

Dowling, a Lewis County native, attended Centralia College for one year before transferring to Central Washington University and Washington State University, where he ultimately earned his bachelor’s degrees in political science and law and justice and his master’s degree in criminal justice.

After graduating, Dowling worked 13 years as a US Special Agent for the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS), for which he served as Counterintelligence Director to the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, supported Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm, provided travel security to United Nations and NATO missions in Europe, and served as a Senior Special Agent worldwide.

From 2002-04, he served as a Federal Air Marshal and as a senior representative on the FBI National Joint Terrorism Task Force. In 2004-06, he served as a Senior Special Agent assigned to the FBI National Joint Terrorism Task Force and served on the President’s National Infrastructure Protection Plan. He also cofounded a national, web-based government portal to share real-time tactical information between law enforcement agencies at all levels.

After his time in government service, he provided full-time security protection for the Gates Family in Seattle before becoming a security consultant and contractor for Tactical, LLC. in Virginia in 2006. As part of his work, he invented a web-based security portal aimed at predicting and preventing school shootings.

In 2015, he founded Tactical Institute, a real-time social media monitoring service staffed by combat-wounded veterans.  His Washington, D.C.-based company, for which he now serves as president, monitors the internet and notifies law enforcement agencies of global threats of crime and terrorism. His work has been featured in the Washington Post and several cyber technology journals.

“What a great surprise and honor,” Dowling said of his selection as 2018 Distinguished Alumnus. “I have such fond memories of my year at what was then Centralia Community College, as well as the professors and classes that have helped shape my future.”

Dowling will be the featured speaker at the commencement ceremony June 15. His sister, Laura Dowling, was the 2013 Distinguished Alumna.

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