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Archive for April 26th, 2010

DorobekINSIDER: GSA’s Johnson’s memo to staff re Turco as the new head of governmentwide policy

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We told you earlier that GSA administrator Martha Johnson named Kathleen Turco, GSA’s current chief financial officer, to lead the agency’s Office of Governmentwide Policy.

Here is the memo Johnson sent to employees today:

MEMORANDUM FOR ALL EMPLOYEES

FROM: Martha Johnson
Administrator

GSA's Kathleen Turco

SUBJECT: New Associate Administrator for the Office of Governmentwide Policy

As we continue to make important leadership transitions to better leverage GSA’s position, I am happy to announce that I have asked Kathleen Turco to serve as the Associate Administrator for the Office of Governmentwide Policy effective May 3, 2010.

For eight years as GSA’s Chief Financial Officer, Kathleen has served the agency as principal advisor on federal financial management, ensuring compliance with financial policies governing the $17 billion in financial activity for federal buildings, acquisition management, citizen services, and governmentwide policy. As head of OGP, Kathleen will lead the development and evaluation of governmentwide policies for management and internal operations of the federal government.

I will be working closely with agency leadership to find a new CFO for GSA that will continue the legacy of fiscal integrity that Kathleen leaves behind. During this transition I have asked Micah Cheatham, Director of Budget in OCFO, to serve as Acting Chief Financial Officer.

Additionally, I will continue to work with leadership and the White House to appoint a new Chief Acquisition Officer and a new White House Liaison for the agency as Michael Robertson transitions into his new role as Chief of Staff. In the interim, I have asked Michael to continue serving in these capacities.

Please join me in welcoming Kathleen to her new position and in thanking Micah for stepping up to lead as we make the transition.

Sincerely,

Martha

Written by cdorobek

April 26, 2010 at 4:27 PM

Posted in GSA, Policy

DorobekINSIDER: Turco to lead GSA’s Office of Governmentwide Policy

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GSA Administrator Martha Johnson continues to get her leadership team in place — today, Johnson announced that Kathleen Turco, GSA’s current chief financial officer, will lead GSA’s Office of Governmentwide Policy.

GSA has issued a statement from Johnson:

Kathleen Turco has been a responsible, effective Chief Financial Officer for GSA for the past eight years,” said Martha Johnson, Administrator of General Services. “She knows the importance of providing exceptional services to the federal government at best value to the taxpayer and will use this experience well in leading the Office of Governmentwide Policy as we continue to develop and implement management and internal operations policies across government.

Turco will start on May 3, the same day that Michael Robertson will take over as GSA’s chief of staff.

Micah Cheatham, GSA Budget Director, will take over as GSA’s acting CFO, according to Sahar Wali, GSA’s deputy associate administrator for communications and marketing.

Robertson will continue to serve as the chief acquisition officer and White House liason until replacements are found, Wali said.

Insiders tell the DorobekINSIDER that Turco is very excited about the opportunities with GSA’s Office of Governmentwide Policy. OGP has been widely seen as directionless for awhile, and Turco has told friends that she is excited about working on important policy issues that can help government operate better.

Turco has received kudos for her work as GSA’s chief financial officer, including the recently issued “citizen report,” which explains GSA’s budget. Turco joined Federal News Radio’s Tom Temin from IRMCO earlier this month. Hear that conversation here.

The Office of Governmentwide Policy was created in December 1995 to consolidate its policy functions into a single organization. “OGP’s policymaking authority covers the areas of personal and real property, travel and transportation, information technology, regulatory information and use of federal advisory committees. OGP’s strategic direction is to ensure that governmentwide policies encourage agencies to develop and utilize the best, most cost effective management practices for the conduct of their specific programs,” the OGP web site says.

Meanwhile, here is Turco’s bio:

GSA's Kathleen Turco

Kathleen M. Turco – Chief Financial Officer

Kathleen M. Turco was appointed the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) for the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) on August 5, 2002.

In her capacity as the agency’s CFO, she provides enterprise-wide leadership for strategic planning, financial and budgetary analysis, performance budgeting, portfolio management, systems life cycle management, business case methodology and internal control processes and procedures. She provides the executive leadership and direction in administering the GSA’s Performance Management Process including the agencywide strategic planning, performance budgeting, financial management, and the core financial management system. She serves as principal advisor to the GSA Administrator on federal financial management, ensuring compliance with financial policies governing the $17 billion in financial activity for federal buildings, acquisition management, citizen services and governmentwide policy.

The GSA Office of the CFO (OCFO) is an Office of Management and Budget (OMB) designated Financial Management Line of Business (FMLoB) Shared Services Provider (SSP). OCFO offers “corporate” shared financial management services to GSA and more than 50 external customers by providing: high quality financial management services including strategic planning; budget and performance management; labor forecasting and distribution; financial analysis; financial operations (accounts payable, accounts receivable, cost allocation, asset management); ePayroll; travel management (E-Gov Travel), charge card (travel and purchase), financial reporting; internal controls and audit follow-up.

Ms. Turco came to GSA from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). At IRS she served as the Director of Financial Policy, Planning and Programs in the Office of the Chief Information Officer from 2001 to 2002 and was the IRS’ Deputy Chief Financial Officer for Strategic Planning and Budgeting where she directed the IRS strategic planning and budgeting from 1998 to 2002.

Prior to IRS, Ms. Turco was an examiner at the Executive Office of the President’s Office of Management and Budget for 10 years. She began her career with the Department of Education.

Ms. Turco was the recipient of a 2006 Presidential Rank Award as a meritorious executive and the 2008 Donald L. Scantlebury Memorial Award for Distinguished Leadership in Financial Management Improvement. She is a member of U.S. Chief Financial Officers Council and the Office of Federal Procurement Policy’s Cost Accounting Standards Board.

Ms. Turco has an undergraduate degree from the University of Maryland and a Master’s in business administration from the University of West Florida.

Here is GSA’s description of the Office of Governmentwide Policy:

In December 1995, GSA created the Office of Governmentwide Policy (OGP) to consolidate its policy functions into a single organization. OGP’s policymaking authority covers the areas of personal and real property, travel and transportation, information technology, regulatory information and use of federal advisory committees. OGP’s strategic direction is to ensure that governmentwide policies encourage agencies to develop and utilize the best, most cost effective management practices for the conduct of their specific programs.

To reach the goal of improving governmentwide management of property, technology, and administrative services, OGP builds and maintains a policy framework, by (1) incorporating the requirements of federal laws, Executive Orders, and other regulatory material into policies and guidelines, (2) facilitating governmentwide reform to provide federal managers with business-like incentives and tools and flexibility to prudently manage their assets, and (3) identifying, evaluating, and promoting best practices to improve efficiency of management processes.

Guided by the principles of the President’s Management Agenda and the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), some of OGP’s recent efforts have been devoted to providing leadership in the development of a policy environment and key enablers for electronic government, and supporting OMB in the implementation of various E-Gov initiatives to standardize and streamline government processes. The new model calls for involvement of other federal agencies, the private sector, interested parties, and other stakeholders from the very onset of policy review and/or formulation. Such collaborative efforts are seen to offer numerous advantages, not least of which is to ensure “buy-in” from the policy customers.

Written by cdorobek

April 26, 2010 at 1:57 PM

DorobekINSIDER: AFCEA Bethesda’s 12 annual benefit for The Children’s Inn at NIH

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The 12th annual AFCEA Bethesda annual charity ball to Benefit the Children’s Inn at NIH. It is often one of the best events of the year — and this year was no exception. (Congratulations to Microsoft’s Teresa Carlson and Mark Hollander, Associate Director for Management at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. They served as the co-chairpeople for the event.)

The NIH Children's Inn Gala

For those of you who don’t know about it, the Children’s Inn is similar to the Ronald MacDonald houses — they are a place where families can stay near the hospital and have as normal of a life as is possible. Over the years, AFCEA Bethesda has raised more than $2 million to benefit The Children’s Inn at NIH.

If you were not able to attend and you want to donate to the Children’s Inn at NIH, it is a wonderful cause… and $93 buys a day at the Inn for somebody. You can make your donation here.

You can see a slideshow of the event here.

AFCEA Bethesda does a great job with this event. There was a new location for the event this year — the JW Marriott, which allowed for more tables.

Each year, the gala features one of the Inn’s families who talks about life at the Inn. It is always one of the highlights of the evening, and this year was no exception. This year, we got to hear from Kaytelan Hoppes, an 8-year-old who has osteogenesis imperfecta – better known as brittle bone disease. It is a condition that causes extremely fragile bones. And Hoppes talked about the impact that the Inn has had on her family — the ability to have a home away from home. (And she even let it be known that it enables her mother to get an occasional massage. Given what these families go through, whatever it takes to survive. Good for Mom!)

The only snag of the evening — a fire alarm right at the start of the live auction. (You could tell the journalists in the room because none of the people at the Federal News Radio table moved.) The immediate concern was that it would scare people away — and, of course, that they wouldn’t return and it would impact the live auction prices. But… the false alarm sure didn’t seem to have an impact. Most of the items — including a Vespa that the DorobekINSIDER was bidding on — all went for more then their estimated values.

Congratulations to those involved. Nice job! Looking forward to 2011!

See a slideshow from the event here.

Meanwhile… more photos…

Best shoes of the night

The Daily Debrief with Chris Dorobek and Amy Morris

No word on where Jim Williams is going -- yet

1105's Anne Armstrong and Eric Pesachowitz

Team NASA

Team Federal News Radio 1500 AM

Written by cdorobek

April 26, 2010 at 9:37 AM