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The Aftermath of Shutdown: Expert Advice from Former Gov Execs

Thursday, February 14, 2019 - 10AM-11:30AM EST
Venue Address: 
ICF International
1725 I (Eye) Street, NW
Washington, DC , DC
Thursday, February 14, 2019 - 10AM-11:30AM EST
2019-02-14 10:00:00 2019-02-14 11:30:00 America/New_York The Aftermath of Shutdown: Expert Advice from Former Gov Execs See more details at: ICF International, 1725 I (Eye) Street, NW, Washington, DC, DC
Venue Address: 
ICF International
1725 I (Eye) Street, NW
Washington, DC , DC

Event Details


ACT-IAC Evolving the Workforce Community of Interest (COI)
February 14, 2019 COI Meeting
10:00 AM to 11:30 AM

Featured Topic: The Aftermath of Shutdown:  Expert Advice from Former Government Executives

The longest government shutdown has come to a close, and challenges facing federal leaders and the federal workforce as they restart operations are complex and time-consuming. During this period, agency leaders are managing both workforce concerns as well as resuming interrupted work activities.

Each furloughed worker has financial concerns, whether federal government or contract employee, while management be focused on how to achieve the most from their total workforce and support them in re-engaging.

To give insights on past “restart” experiences and provide suggestions for how best to proceed in the current environment, we have invited four former government executives who have led through prior Government shutdowns to give their insights on both workforce management and program delivery. 

Topics will include:

  • Work backlogs (including prioritization and triage of all delayed activities, from sorting through email to addressing process backlogs to re-evaluating and re-structuring projects and work assignments to assessing damage down and estimating recovery time and costs; and how to address what was previously planned and now might never be done)
  • Worker engagement (particularly around retention of key talent that has already started looking for private sector jobs; negative emotions of anger, feelings of betrayal, and fear it will happen again on Feb. 15; financial impacts that spill over into work productivity, such as possible loss of childcare arrangements during the shutdown)
  • Team dynamics (including re-establishing and supporting ongoing relationships among those furloughed and continuing to work, those furloughed and required to stop working, and contract staff who were furloughed without prospects of future pay)

We think you will find this session valuable as you work to optimize your agency’s workforce performance.  You and your team can attend in person, or online.


Richard Spires, Chief Executive Officer, Learning Tree International and former CIO at the Department of Homeland Security - Moderator

Mr. Richard A. Spires has 30 years of experience in operations and information technology issues, working in both the private and public sectors.  He is the Chief Executive Officer of Learning Tree International, Inc. since 2015.  Prior to Learning Tree, Mr. Spires served as the Chief Information Officer of U.S. Department of Homeland Security from 2009 to 2013.  Before that he held an SVP position with SRA International and was the President and Chief Operating Officer of Mantas, Inc.  From 2007 to 2008, Mr. Spires served as the Deputy Commissioner for Operations Support for the Internal Revenue Service. Previously, he served as the Chief Information Officer of Internal Revenue Service, where he had oversight of its accountable for administering more than 200 million United States taxpayer records. He served as an Associate Chief Information Officer of Applications Development.

Katherine Coffman, former Executive at the Internal Revenue Service and Customs and Border Protection - Panelist

Katherine Coffman retired in 2018 as Chief Human Capital Officer at the Internal Revenue Service, following 8 years at U.S. Customs and Border Protection where as Assistant Commissioner of the Office of Human Resources Management (HRM) she managed a centralized human resources program providing service to nearly 60,000 nationwide and overseas CBP employees and responsible for all matters involving human resources, including hiring, recruitment, organizational realignments, compensation and pay administration, benefits, workplace safety, and labor and employee relations.  Previously she served almost 24 years with the Department of Defense in the U.S. Marine Corps, the Department of the Navy and the Defense Intelligence Agency.

Jeff Neal, former Executive at the Departments of Homeland Security and Commerce and the Defense Logistics Agency - Panelist

Prior to his current role as Senior Vice President at ICF (since 2011), Jeff served as CHCO at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) from 2009-2011 where he was responsible for the department’s recruiting, diversity, learning and development, policies, programs and technology.  Prior to that role he was the CHRO for the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) from 2000-2009.  Jeff’s 31 years as a career civil servant includes extensive Federal human resources and information technology experience including 11 years as a career member of the Senior Executive Service.

Bill Valdez, President of the Senior Executives Association and former Executive, Department of Energy - Panelist

Bill Valdez was appointed as the President of the Senior Executives Association (SEA) in September 2016.  Bill retired from Federal service as a career Senior Executive in July 2014.  His career with the Department of Energy spanned over 20 years and he has extensive knowledge in many Government leadership areas including science and engineering workforce development, budget planning and execution, diversity and equal opportunity issues, science policy, human capital processes and policies, procurement processes and policies, corporate and strategic planning, and contract management.

Concourse Conference Room
1725 I (Eye) Street, NW
Washington, DC
Closest Metro: Farragut West Station

Remote participation logistics will be provided upon registration.

We look forward to seeing you there!

ACT-IAC Evolving the Workforce COI Leadership Team
Deb Tomchek, Industry Chair
Terri Shaffer, Government Chair
Rebecca Russell, Government Vice-Chair
Andrew McCoy, Industry Vice-Chair
Doris Reeves, Program Chair
Robert Clarke, Communications Chair
Craig Petrun, Knowledge Capture Chair
Juan Salazar, NexUS Liaison