Give Yourself a Pat on The Back!

Ed O’Keefe published an article in today’s Washington Post that’s a nice pat-on-the-back to Govies, recognizing that we really are the ones who keep things going, and who do so with honor, integrity, and respect for our Nation’s fiduciary responsibilities to its citizens. Here’s an excerpt from Ed’s Fed Eye commentary:


The nation’s federal watchdogs will honor 85 of their own for work on some of the most important, jaw-dropping, headline-inducing investigations of the past year.

Collectively, federal inspectors general identified almost $44 billion in potential savings during fiscal 2009 … Investigations in 2009 resulted in $34.9 billion in potential savings from audit reports, $8.9 billion in federal funds recovered, more than 5,900 successful criminal prosecutions and 4,485 suspensions or debarments of delinquent individuals or contractors. They fielded a combined 417,349 calls to their hotlines and published more than 7,000 audits, evaluations and other reports.

Here’s a list of some of this year’s winners:

  • The 2010 Alexander Hamilton Award — the group’s most prestigious — goes to the Defense Department watchdog’s work on investigating whether the Afghanistan Security Forces Fund was used properly. (Hint: It wasn’t.)
  • The team from the Securities and Exchange Commission that determined the agency did little to stop Bernard L. Madoff’s ponzi scheme will be honored with the group’s Better Government Award. The team’s reporting inspired a series of financial regulatory reforms.
  • The Commerce Department’s 2010 Census Oversight Team will be honored for “exemplary service” for a recurring series of reports on the planning, coordination, and execution of the largest decennial census in American history. (Example: Census workers who did no work were paid.)
  • The Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration will be honored with an award for dedication and courage for its reports on potential threats directed at the Internal Revenue Service and its workers. (Example: IRS investigates flurry of threats against its workers and facilities.)

So when you hear people railing about government waste, try not to take it too personally since there are also people around you who recognize that you are among the watchdogs who work behind the scenes to actually find and rid your organization of waste, fraud, and abuse!

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