SPOKANE, Wash. -- A former manager at the Target store in north Spokane took a new job overseeing the National Nuclear Security Administration.
Nuclear Weapons & Materials Monitor, a weekly trade publication, reported that the NNSA has named Steve Asher as its acting head of nuclear security. Asher was picked to develop and implement security programs at nuke sites nationwide.
Asher began working with NNSA in 2012 according to Nuclear Weapons & Materials Monitor. The publications said that Asher was originally hired as a security consultant.
Previously, Asher lived in Spokane County after retiring from the Air Force as a colonel according to a former Target co-worker.
KREM 2 News interviewed Asher during the Black Friday sales in 2009. Asher worked as a team leader at the Target store in north Spokane at the time.
The Nuclear Weapons & Materials Monitor reported that Asher commanded a missile base in Montana before working at Target. Colonel Steve Asher served at Malmstrom Air Force Base with the 341st Security Forces Group.
Malmstrom provides security to the Intercontinental Ballistic Missile Systems located throughout a 23,000-square mile portion of Montana.
Asher commanded more than 1,200 men and women assigned to the 341st Security Forces Group according to the Malmstrom website. A spokeswoman for the base told MotherJones.com that Asher commanded the group from 2005 to 2008. The spokeswoman added that Asher was in charge of security for 200 intercontinental ballistic missiles.
The Air Force Times reported in November of 2008 that the 341st Missile Wing had failed its nuclear surety inspection. The article cited problems with maintenance and with the program which monitors access to nuclear missiles. The 341st passed the missile operations portion of the inspection according to the article.
However leaders at the NNSA told MotherJones.com that they have no doubt about Asher’s experience.