Federal Eye: Kaplan Named OPM General Counsel

Elaine Kaplan will serve as one of President Obama’s lead advisors on federal human resource issues in her new role as general counsel of the Office of Personnel Management. The agency’s acting director, Kathie Ann Whipple, appointed her to the job today, calling her “uniquely qualified” to serve OPM. Currently a senior deputy counsel at the National Treasury Employees Union and the former head of the U.S. Office of Special Counsel, Kaplan also led the Obama transition team’s government operations group. While she was appointed by OPM’s acting director, she is expected to keep the job whenever John Berry, Obama’s pick to lead OPM, wins Senate confirmation.

Kaplan’s legal career began more than 25 years ago in the Solicitor’s office of the Labor Department. She joined NTEU in 1984 and supervised its federal caseload until 1998, when President Clinton appointed her to lead the OSC. Kaplan joined employment law firm Bernabei and Katz at the end of her term in 2003, then rejoined NTEU in 2004. She has also served as an adjunct professor at American University’s School of Public Administration since 2004.

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