Alumni Spotlights

NU’s Criminal Justice Program Paved Kelly (Mullaney) Milliman’s Way to a Career in the FBI

Kelly (Mullaney) Milliman B.S.’10, M.S.’11, always knew she wanted to work for the FBI. The education she received as a criminal justice major at Niagara University paved the way for her to achieve that goal.

“The investigative work of the FBI really captured my attention,” she said. “I have always enjoyed the concept and challenge of ‘putting the pieces of the puzzle together.’ The FBI offered just that. Throughout your career, you may investigate a wide range of violations, including white collar, cyber, organized gang activity, or other federal crimes. In addition, the FBI is one of the most well-respected law enforcement agencies in the world. Being a part of that ‘family’ and getting to work with the best of the best (while helping others) just sounded like a good fit for me.”

The Lockport, N.Y., native enrolled at Niagara because of the small class sizes, the post-graduation job placement rate, and the professors who provided real-life knowledge.

“Each professor brought something different to the classroom that I really benefitted from,” she said. “The CJ program had such a nice blend of professors, all of whom would take time to really listen to your personal goals and help you work toward them.”

Kelly completed an internship with the Niagara Falls Police Department’s Crime Scene Unit as an undergraduate, where she gained hands-on experience in some of the work she ultimately would do as a special agent with the FBI. During her graduate studies, she worked with the university’s First Responders Disability Awareness Training program, which prepared her to serve as chair of her office’s Disability Awareness Committee.

Kelly’s first jobs after graduating with her bachelor’s and master’s degrees were as an asset protection team lead at Target, where she was responsible for providing a safe and secure environment, mitigating shortage risks, and preventing, investigating, and resolving theft and fraud; and as a data analyst with Forfeiture Support Associates, where she worked with Drug Enforcement Administration agents, state and local law enforcement partners, and the United States Attorney’s Office to organize information packages that were used by corresponding agencies and Department of Justice processing units in their investigations.

But she still had her sights set on a job with the FBI. In February 2018, after graduating from the FBI Academy, she obtained her current position as a special agent, based out of the FBI’s Philadelphia office. 

As a member of a white collar squad, Kelly investigates complex financial crimes involving insider trading, stock market manipulation, bank fraud, elder fraud and, more recently, fraud related to the pandemic relief/economic disaster loans. Her responsibilities vary considerably, and include conducting interviews, training at firearms, preparing for trial, and assisting with security for large events. She also handles administrative work such as writing subpoenas and search warrants and reviewing documents.

Kelly is also a member of her office’s evidence response team, assisting with collecting and preserving forensic evidence at crime scenes. One such scene involved a kidnapping, where she swabbed for blood and was fascinated by the precision and accuracy that was needed to collect this kind of evidence. She is also proud of the part she played in apprehending a particularly “clever” target in Florida, an arrest that was central in attempting to bringing justice to the victim of the case.

“Being a part of the bureau gives you the opportunity to work some of the most amazing cases with extremely talented individuals,” she said. “The job can be mentally and physically challenging, but in the long run, it’s always worth it. I enjoy the challenging case work, the reward of justice being served, and the many exciting opportunities the job has provided me thus far.”

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