Global leaders recount leadership highlights, including supporting quality “for practitioners/by practitioners” deliverables that are being adopted by all levels of government and private industry. The “Global process,” a collaborative approach to solving business problems, is also discussed as an invaluable Global success, as well as efforts originating in Global recommendations, such as the National Information Exchange Model (NIEM).
Interview with the GAC Chair and Vice Chair on the
Global Highlights and Success During Their Leadership
- Interviewer (I);
- GAC Chairman Robert Boehmer (RB)
- GAC Vice Chairman Carl Wicklund (CW)
I: During the time that you have been leaders, what have been the highlights of your leadership? What do you think have been the most significant things that have gone on in Global, the things that you are most proud of? And, I am going to turn it over to whoever wants to go first.
RB: I could start with that one and talk a little bit about it. Not as much talking about products that I am proud of, although as we look at the list of Global products, I am proud of a lot of them. There are a lot of great things going on and a lot of things being used out in the field. But one of the things that I want to look at is to talk a little bit about the working groups and how they are working together in both the Policy- groups as well as the Technology-oriented groups, understand the interrelationships, and there is cross-membership between those groups because the technologists understand that policy needs to drive the technology—not technology driving the policy. And I think we have seen, especially in the last few years, the development of that relationship between those policy and technical people that I think is a big basis for the success and popularity of the Global products. I think the best example of that, which we can say is going to be a “proud accomplishment,” is the Justice Reference Architecture, which brings together not only the technical standards and other technical solutions but also the policy issues such as privacy and other policies…brings those together. So, I would say it was built on these committees understanding their interdependence, and the policy and technology just works very well together through the Global process.
I: And that’s got to be a hard thing, because we talk about literally—in technological terms—different languages, but when we talk about technologists and policy makers, that is often different languages in and of itself. So, that seems to speak to Global’s ability to bring partners together not only from different agencies, but almost different worlds to work on a common good—a solution.
RB: That’s right. And actually, several years ago, even before I became a chair of Global, as I started to get involved on the committees, we didn’t see as much interaction, and I think just necessarily so because the technology people had to work on what those technologies: what was available and start putting that together. But as that evolved, I think you really saw them coming together and finding ways, as you said, Donna, to not just use the standards and technology, but their own common languages to make sure they understood what each other are talking about.
I: That’s great. So, Carl, what do you think?
CW: Well, you know, I think as I look back just over the last few years, the thing that I am most proud of is the growing recognition within the Department of Justice and other government agencies of the importance of Global and the products and services that Global has developed. The fact that the Department of Homeland Security has engaged such a degree with Global, or the Office of the National Director of Intelligence, or the Program Manager for Information Sharing—to have all of those groups recognize and support Global, I think is not only a tribute to Global’s collaborative spirit but it is also a tribute to the quality of the solutions that Global has developed.
RB: Well, you know, I want to add in, too, when Carl talks about bringing people to the table, I really think that it is a significant success of Global. It is really a unique collaboration. I don’t know if you can point to anything else in federal, state, or local government that brings together these kinds of people, the diversity of the people that actually work together and get the problems solved. Especially, for a Federal Advisory Committee, I don’t think you will see another Federal Advisory Committee with that kind of participation as well as the output that they put out. The other piece of that I would talk about, when Carl talked about responsibility and under whose leadership, I think such an important part of Global is the fact that we don’t have people that go out and take credit for products, because it truly is a collaborative effort. So when you see a federal person sitting with a local person, with a court person, a tribal person, sitting in a room, writing up a solution to a problem that we have all identified and bringing that forward, it became a group project rather than any individual person that is responsible for the success. The participation of the representatives of all those associations and people in the field is the real success of Global.
I: It’s actually turned into almost a term d’art, which is, it’s the “Global process” or the “Global model,” which I think speaks to what you were talking about, Bob, that it was almost unprecedented before…. And it has become this. Now, we see it happily spreading out into all sorts of different communities of, “Global does it this way and they bring the people together,” and it is like you say, a group effort. There is not one single star, not one single agency taking credit, and it has become known almost as the “Global process,” so I think that is something. You can’t buy that—that’s not really something that you can force. It just happened I think through the group of people at the table.
I: Well, I think that’s also credit to both of your leaderships. I think that is something that you can both be proud of, and I imagine it is kind of a highlight of your tenure.
Opinions or points of view expressed in these recordings represent those of the speakers and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the U.S. Department of Justice. Any commercial products and manufacturers discussed in these recordings are presented for informational purposes only and do not constitute product approval or endorsement by the U.S. Department of Justice.