(also known as Antonio Mendez
) is a former CIA
technical operations officer. His job was to support clandestine
CIA operations. He is most famous for the Canadian caper
during the Iran hostage crisis
, when six American diplomats were smuggled out of Iran
by disguising them as a Canadian film crew with team leader CBC cameraman Dennis Packer and passports supplied by the Canadian government.
Prior to joining the agency, Mendez was an artist and now works on art full time. His work in the agency frequently dealt with forging foreign documents, creating disguises and handling other graphical work related to espionage.
Tony Mendez is the author of two books: Master of Disguise
(ISBN 0-06-095791-3) and Spy Dust
(ISBN 0-06-095791-3), both memoirs of his CIA experiences. Some photos of his works as a CIA chief of disguises was depicted in the January 2005 edition of FHM
Mendez is married to Jonna, another CIA chief of disguises and artist. Both Mendez and his wife serve on the Board of Directors for the International Spy Museum
, a for-profit museum under the guidance of Peter Ernest, another CIA retiree.His son, Toby Mendez
, is a sculptor
, having sculpted Nolan Ryan
for Arlington Stadium in Dallas, Texas
, and Thurgood Marshall
for BWI Airport.