[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/07/01/art.pistole.gi.jpg caption="John Pistole was sworn in as head of the TSA on Thursday."]Washington (CNN) - Former FBI Deputy Director John Pistole was sworn in as the new head of the Transportation Security Administration Thursday, concluding a lengthy search process in which two previous nominees withdrew from consideration amid allegations of improprieties.
The missteps left the agency - which includes the nation's 50,000 airport screeners, thousands of air marshals, and others - with an acting chief for almost a year and a half, a time marked by a series of transportation-related security scares, most notably the Christmas Day bombing attempt on an aircraft entering the United States.
Pistole was sworn in by Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano during a rail security event at New York's Pennsylvania Station.
A career official with the FBI, Pistole was appointed head of the bureau's counterterrorism division after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.