Amy Bennett is a management and program analyst with the Office of Government Information Services (OGIS) within the National Archives and Records Administration. Prior to joining OGIS in late 2014, Ms. Bennett was the assistant director at OpenTheGovernment.org, where she works extensively on the organization's policy issues, including improving access to government information, reducing national security secrecy, preserving records, and increasing openness and accountability of the federal government. Ms. Bennett has been particularly involved in the coalition's work on FOIA reform. Ms. Bennett served as the secretary of the American Society of Access Professionals from 2013 to 2014.
Marianne Manheim is the Chief of the Freedom of Information and Privacy Act Branch at the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, National Institutes of Health. From 2009 – 2015, Ms. Manheim served as the FOIA Program Manager at the U.S. Department of State, where she was responsible for developing and implementing FOIA policies, FOIA training, and FOIA reporting, as well as for continuously evaluating the State Department's FOIA process to make improvements. She also served as the Department of State's FOIA Public Liaison. Ms. Manheim has also worked at the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, where she was responsible for privacy, data breach, and controlled unclassified information, and at Peace Corps Headquarters, where she served as the FOIA and Privacy Act Officer for the agency. She holds a J.D. from Valparaiso University School of Law and a B.A. from the University of Idaho and served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Cote d'Ivoire. Ms. Manheim served on the ASAP Board of Directors from 2013 - 2016.
Kirsten B. Mitchell is a facilitator and review team lead with the Office of Government Information Services (OGIS), the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Ombudsman's office located at the National Archives. Before joining OGIS in 2010, she worked at the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press and the Sunshine in Government Initiative, a coalition of media groups that worked to gain passage of the OPEN Government Act of 2007, which amended FOIA and created OGIS. A former journalist, most recently with the New York Times Co., Kirsten frequently used state and federal records, including databases, to shine a light on how government operates. She earned a certificate in federal workplace mediation in 2011 from Northern Virginia Mediation Service, an affiliate of the George Mason University School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, and is a member of the American Society of Access Professionals (ASAP) and Investigative Reporters and Editors (IRE). Ms. Mitchell earned her undergraduate degree in English at Mary Washington College and her graduate degree in journalism and public affairs at American University.
Kellie Robinson recently assumed responsibilities at the Department of State. Prior to this, she was one of the Veterans Health Administration’s (VHA), Central Office (CO), Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Officers. She is the VHA FOIA Officer for Training and Education. She is responsible for providing training to VHA staff in VHA program offices at CO, VHA VISN’s, and VA Medical Centers; for processing VHA FOIA requests; and the implementation of the VHA FOIA Program. She administers the VHA FOIA Program by processing FOIA requests received in VHACO, and provides expert FOIA guidance to VHA leadership and the field FOIA Officers through various means including face-to-face and virtual FOIA training.
Scott Hodes entered private practice in 2003. Prior to that, he spent over a decade working as an attorney for the federal government. Mr. Hodes worked for the Department of Labor, Department of Justice (Office of Information and Privacy) and the FBI. From 1998 to 2002 at the FBI, Mr. Hodes was the Acting Unit Chief of the Freedom of Information/Privacy Act Section's Litigation Unit and was a Top Secret Classification Authority. Mr. Hodes has been involved in thousands of FOIA and Privacy Act matters. Mr. Hodes is admitted to the bars of the District of Columbia and the State of Maryland, the United States District Court for the District of Columbia and the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. He has also been admitted pro hac vice to practice before other federal district courts. Mr. Hodes is a member of the American Society of Access Professionals and a contributor to a number of publications on matters dealing with government information policies and practices. Mr. Hodes currently practices civil matters, focusing primarily on the Freedom of Information and Privacy Act. Mr. Hodes received his J.D. from Arizona State University in 1989 and his B.S. in Accounting from Indiana University in 1986. Mr. Hodes has served on the ASAP Board of Directors since 2011 and served as president from 2013 to 2014.
Jonathan Cantor joined the Department of Homeland Security as Deputy Chief Privacy Officer on July 1, 2012. He then served as the Acting Chief Privacy Officer from August 2012 until October 2013. Mr. Cantor advises the Chief Privacy Officer and other senior DHS leaders on domestic and international privacy laws, policies, and programs. He is a Senior Executive Service official with 15 years of experience in privacy, transparency, and access to information
Ginger McCall is Associate Director of EPIC and Director of EPIC's Open Government Program and IPIOP Program. Ms. McCall also teaches a course on the Law of Open Government at Georgetown University Law Center and has been appointed to the FOIA Modernization Federal Advisory Committee. She works on a variety of issues at EPIC, including consumer protection, open government requests, amicus curiae briefs, and national security matters. Ms. McCall oversees EPIC's Freedom of Information Act lawsuits and was a co-editor of Litigation Under the Federal Government Laws 2010. Ms. McCall has been published in the New York Times and has co-authored several amicus curiae briefs on privacy issues to the Supreme Court of the United States. She has been invited to speak on privacy and open government issues in a variety of academic and conference venues, including the EU's MAPPING Project, the 2009 Computers, Freedom, and Privacy Conference, the Internet Governance Forum USA 2009 Conference, Duke Law School's Center on Law, Ethics, and National Security, and the New England Consortium of State Labor Relations Agencies 11th Annual Conference. Ms. McCall has also provided expert commentary for local, national, and international media, including The New York Times, Washington Post, Fox News, NPR, MSNBC, USA Today, the Wall Street Journal, and Al Jazeera.
I am the co-founder and co-owner of MuckRock, a independent FOIA and public records tool that has helped thousands of individuals and dozens of news organizations file Freedom of Information Act requests and helped millions learn more about the process and more deeply engage with this important right to an informed democracy.
I have spoken at two ASAP events, and regularly engage with both the requester and processor communities.
I have done public records training with dozens of newsrooms, have been a contributor to two Pulitzer Prize winning series, and have helped engage a new generation in the public records process through both my work at MuckRock and outreach to journalists, activists, and the general public.
I was previously an editor at the Boston Globe, where I launched the paper's BetaBoston technology vertical; a John S. Knight Journalism fellow at Stanford, where I investigated participatory information analysis; and a board member of the Homeless Empowerment Project, a non-profit dedicated to helping combat homelessness in Cambridge, MA.
Harry Hammitt is editor/publisher of Access Reports, a biweekly newsletter on the Freedom of Information Act and open government laws and policies. He is the primary editor of Litigation Under the Federal Open Government Laws published by the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC).
He received his B.A. from the University of Michigan in 1975. He holds an M.A. in journalism from the University of Missouri and a J.D. from George Washington University Law School. He has worked as an information specialist for the Consumer Product Safety Commission, and for FOI Services, a third-party requesting company that deals primarily with businesses in the food and drug industry.
He became editor of Access Reports in 1985 and became publisher in 1989. He has written and lectured extensively on access and privacy issues in both the United States and Canada. He is a past president of the American Society of Access Professionals and has conducted that organization’s annual seminar on business information issues for more than ten years. He was inducted into the FOI Hall of Fame at the Freedom Forum in Arlington, Virginia, in 2001.
Dr. James Holzer is the Deputy Chief FOIA Officer at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). In this role, Dr. Holzer serves as the senior advisor on FOIA and the Privacy Act to the Department’s executive-level leaders throughout DHS. Prior to joining DHS in May 2016, Dr. Holzer served as the second Director of the Office of Government Information Services (OGIS), the federal Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) ombudsman’s office. Before joining OGIS, Dr. Holzer spent six years in the DHS FOIA Office serving in the role of Senior Director of FOIA Operations. Dr. Holzer served in the U.S. Air Force for 13 years; while on active duty where he worked extensively in matters involving administrative policies. He deployed to Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003 and to Afghanistan in 2007. Dr. Holzer received his Doctorate of Management from University of Maryland, University College. He also earned Master of Human Relations degree from the University of Oklahoma, and a B.S. in Business from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.
I am an attorney-advisor in the Office of Pesticide Programs focusing on FOIA request and litigation that involves large scale eDiscovery. Before joining EPA I worked in the private sector in eDiscovery for large scale client matters involving litigation as well as internal or government investigations. A number of these matters also involved large scale FOIA components to them as well.
I was honored to first join EPA in the summer of 2010 as an Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance law clerk assigned to the National Planning, Measures and Analysis Staff. This summer experience was so enjoyable I was able to organize I second law clerkship experience in the Legal Counsel Division of the Office of Criminal Enforcement, Forensics and Training in the spring of 2011. This was in the last semester of law school where I was a visiting student at The University of Baltimore.
My legal journey began in college at The University of Toledo in the fall of 2004 when I served as an intern in Congresswoman Mary Kaptur’s Washington, D.C. office. This excellent opportunity was my catalyst for pursuing a career in the law. While still in college I had the opportunity to work as an intern at the Public Defender’s Office in Toledo Municipal Court from May 2005 – May 2007, with a brief sabbatical for an internship in the summer of 2007 for an internship at the Office of the Attorney General for the District of Columbia. While an undergraduate student I was awarded The Barney Quilter Good Government Scholarship. Upon graduating, I served as a project assistant at Vorys, Sater, Seymour and Pease LLP in Columbus, Ohio where I was involved in large scale cases involving toxic tort and asbestosis generally focusing on eDiscovery.