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Head of Boston FBI announces he will retire in June

Joseph Bonavolonta has overseen FBI operations in Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island since 2019.

FBI Boston Division Special Agent in Charge Joe Bonavolonta has announced that he will retire June, 9, 2023, marking the end of a 27-year career with the FBI.Pat Greenhouse/Globe Staff

The head of the FBI’s Boston Division, Special Agent in Charge Joseph Bonavolonta, has announced that he will retire in June, the agency said Friday.

Since January 2019, Bonavolonta has overseen all FBI operations in Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island. His retirement on June 9 will mark the end of a 27-year career with the FBI, according to a statement from the Boston Division.

In a letter announcing his retirement, Bonavolonta said he was proud to follow his father into a career with the FBI.

“As many of you know, I was raised in an FBI family with my father having served 24 years as a Special Agent in this organization, and there is no doubt watching the way he went about doing his job cultivated my desire to follow in his footsteps,” Bonavolonta wrote. “I have always considered myself lucky to have been able to carry on the legacy he set, and I have never taken it for granted one single day.”

FBI Director Christopher Wray will appoint Bonavolonta’s replacement at a later date, the FBI Boston Division’s statement said.


Bonavolonta, who also serves as the Director of National Intelligence’s representative for New England, joined the FBI in 1996 as an investigation specialist in the New York Field Office. He became a Special Agent assigned to the office in 2000, the statement said.

Bonavolonta spent years investigating the Bonanno La Cosa Nostra Family, leading to dozens of convictions against high-ranking members and associates in one of New York City’s most powerful crime families, the statement said. His work on the case earned him the Attorney General’s Director’s Award for Superior Performance in 2005.

He has also worked at the FBI’s headquarters in Washington, D.C., and the agency’s Newark Field Office. In the Boston Division, Bonavolonta also served as the Assistant Special Agent in Charge overseeing cyber and counterintelligence programs from 2013 to 2017, the statement said.


“I have had many positive assignments throughout my career but serving all of you as Special Agent in Charge has been one of the most rewarding,” Bonavolonta wrote in his letter. “Simply put, it is time to devote more time to the people who have made the most sacrifices on my behalf, and that is my family, and I look forward to pursuing new endeavors in the private sector.”

Nick Stoico can be reached at nick.stoico@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @NickStoico.