SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – For women or minorities, the FBI may not top their list of places you think would be interested in hiring you, but right now that’s a focus for the organization, and they’re finding women in all sorts of places.

When you think of the FBI, men in dark suits and ties may come to mind, like actor Tom Hanks in the 70’s throwback movie “Catch Me If You Can,” but that mental image is something the FBI wants to change.

“The bureau needs to reflect the population that we serve,” said Special Agent Crystal Bowen, Applicant Coordinator and Recruiter for the FBI Salt Lake City Division. “If we don’t reflect them internally, how do we effectively serve them?”

Bowen said the FBI is aware they need to be better at hiring women and minorities. According to the FBI, of the roughly 13,500 agents across the country, only 21% are women, and just 19% identify as minorities: 8.1% Latino, 4.7% Black or African American, 3.8% Asian, .5% Indigenous or Native American.

Bowen said over the last year the Salt Lake division has made strides to improve FBI diversity, but it’s her job to keep it going. Just days ago, they met with a troop of 8- to 12-year-old Girl Scouts curious about the FBI.

“It’s really capturing women especially, but minorities and anyone else, as early as possible so they consider this line of work and can make choices that are going to be necessary for it when the times comes,” said Bowen.

One of those women is FBI Applicant Krystle Butler. She recently stopped working as a school theater teacher and decided to apply for the FBI. When asked why she applied, she said her brother-in-law sent her a text saying she should do it. If accepted, Butler feels the FBI will give her a career that really matters.

“I’m not, like, the type of person that’s just okay doing you know, whatever job, just to have a job. Like I want it to be meaningful, and I want to contribute,” said Butler.  

That desire for a meaningful career drew Bowen to the FBI, too. She said as a young teenager, she wanted to be like Agent Dana Scully on the popular 1990s TV show “X-Files.” So, after her time as an athlete in college, she joined the U.S. Marines to give herself a better shot at being picked.

“I look forward to the end of my career, knowing that if I had to be away from my kids and if I had to work, I was able to do something that actually mattered to people and it was a worthwhile expenditure of my time,” said Bowen.  

How she convinces other FBI recruits to join is by simply being as open and honest about the job as possible.

“Everything we do matters,” said Bowen. “Everything I do whether it’s recruiting, or working cases matters to other people.”

She’s hopeful more women or minorities like Bulter find the same satisfaction she has, so your next image of the FBI will be much different than the G-Men they’re known for. For potential recruits like Butler, the application process is pretty extensive. She tells ABC4 News it’s taken a few years. She’s currently in the middle of her background check, but once that’s done, she’ll move on to the FBI Academy in Virginia.