Event to Assess Transparency in Second Year of Obama Administration


WASHINGTON, DC, January 14, 2011 – American University Washington College of Law will host a conference titled “Transparency in the Obama Administration: A Second Year Assessment” on Thursday, Jan. 20, from 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.  The program gathers leading experts on transparency issues together with representatives of the Obama Administration to focus on exactly what has been done, what has not been done, and what most urgently still needs to be done to make meaningful government transparency a reality. The event is presented by the Collaboration on Government Secrecy. 

Since January 20, 2009, the Obama Administration has striven to keep its campaign commitment to create "the most transparent administration in history," beginning with Obama’s sweeping “Day One” transparency and FOIA policy memoranda. This conference will examine the progress that has been made and will look forward to transparency issues facing the administration during the balance of its term.

When: January 20, 2011
            10 A.M. – 4 P.M.

Where: American University Washington College of Law – Room 603
             4801 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Washington, DC, 20016

Full Schedule:

 9:00 a.m. Welcome and Introduction -- Daniel J. Metcalfe, Executive Director, Collaboration on Government Secrecy, Washington College of Law

9:10 a.m. Keynote Speech -- Steven P. Croley, Special Assistant to the President, Domestic Policy Counsel, The White House

10:00 a.m. Panel One: The Open Government Directive -- an assessment of this year-old keystone of the Obama Administration’s transparency policy, with attention to the breadth of its related technology initiatives.

Thomas S. Blanton, Director, National Security Archive; Patrice McDermott, Director, OpenTheGovernment.org; Sean Moulton, Director, Federal Information Policy, OMB Watch; John Wonderlich, Policy Director, Sunlight Foundation; and Gary D. Bass, Founder and Executive Director, OMB Watch (moderator)

11:20 a.m. Panel Two: Freedom of Information Act Policy -- a review of governmentwide implementation of the Holder FOIA Memorandum.

Josh Gerstein, Columnist, Politico; Adina H. Rosenbaum, Director, Freedom of Information Clearinghouse, Public Citizen Litigation Group; David Sobel, Senior Counsel and Director, FOIA Litigation for Accountable Government Project, Electronic Frontier Foundation; Anne L. Weismann, Chief Counsel, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, and President, American Society of Access Professionals; Danielle Brian, Executive Director, Project on Government Oversight (moderator)

1:00 p.m. Luncheon Presentation -- Thomas J. Perrelli, Associate Attorney General, United States Department of Justice (invited)

2:15 p.m. Panel Three: Executive Order Pas de Deux -- an inside look at implementation of both Executive Order 13,526 on national security classification and Executive Order 13,556 on “Controlled Unclassified Information.”

William J. Bosanko, Director, Information Security Oversight Office (ISOO), National Archives and Records Administration; Sharon Bradford Franklin, Senior Counsel, The Constitution Project; Michael German, National Security Policy Counsel, American Civil Liberties Union; Patrick D. Viscuso, Associate ISOO Director, Controlled Unclassified Information Office, National Archives and Records Administration; and Steven Aftergood, Executive Director, Project on Government Secrecy, Federation of American Scientists (moderator)

4:00 p.m. Panel Four: Data Review -- a critical analysis of statistics that are used and sometimes abused to measure agency change and performance on transparency issues.

Pedro de Lencastre, Senior Research Assistant, Collaboration on Government Secrecy, Washington College of Law; Carol D. Leonnig, National Staff Writer,

The Washington Post; and Miriam McIntire Nisbet, Founding Director, Office of Government Information Services (OGIS), National Archives and Records Administration

5:00 p.m. Reception

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American University Washington College of Law

In 1896, American University Washington College of Law became the first law school in the country founded by women. More than 100 years since its founding, this law school community is grounded in the values of equality, diversity, and intellectual rigor. The law school’s nationally and internationally recognized programs (in clinical legal education, trial advocacy, international law, and intellectual property to name a few) and dedicated faculty provide its 1700 JD, LL.M., and SJD students with the critical skills and values to have an immediate impact as students and as graduates, in Washington, DC and around the world. For more information, visit wcl.american.edu.