OPM Chief Berry Stepping Down this Week

April 11, 2013

Office of Personnel Management Director John Berry on Thursday announced he will step down when his four-year term expires at the end of this week.

General Counsel Elaine Kaplan will take over as acting director April 15, Berry said in an e-mail to OPM employees.

In his farewell message, Berry thanked OPM’s nearly 5,800 employees for their service.

“From my first day on the job through to today, I’ve known that I could count on this team to accomplish great things,” Berry said. “Together we undertook big challenges.”

After taking over OPM, Berry quickly became known for his optimistic and passionate speeches defending federal employees. As the political winds soured on civil servants in recent years, Berry continued speaking up for feds. At a March labor-management meeting, an angry-sounding Berry warned that the government risks becoming unable to recruit and retain a qualified workforce if it keeps freezing employees’ pay, cutting their benefits, and publicly denigrating them.

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