GAO lawyer to be Obama's pick for top procurement office

Daniel Gordon has background in compliance, procurement law

The Obama White House has settled on an obscure but widely respected government attorney to head up the Office of Federal Procurement Policy, sources have confirmed.

Daniel Gordon, who has served as acting general counsel at the Government Accountability Office since 2006, is President Barack Obama's choice for the key position in the Office of Management and Budget, according to two sources close to the administration. The formal nomination is expected later this week and is subject to Senate confirmation.

The OFPP administrator position, which reports to OMB deputy administrator Jeffrey Zients, has been described as the key procurement position in government because of Obama's repeated emphasis on contracting reforms. The president issued a contracting reform memo in March laying out the kind of reforms he's after, and then followed that in May by signing a bill into law that overhauls the way the Defense Department buys weapons systems.

Gordon replied to a reporter's e-mail request for a bio but declined to respond when asked specifically if he is Obama's pick for the OFPP job.

In his bio, Gordon says he currently manages the 150 attorneys who support GAO’s work, including its audits in the area of acquisition and GAO’s bid protest function.

Before his current job, Gordon lists previous positions as the managing associate general counsel for the GAO’s Procurement Law Division and the assistant general counsel for its Legal Services Division. Before joining GAO in 1992, he worked in private practice in the area of federal procurement.

Gordon has been an adjunct professor at George Washington University since 2002, teaching courses on government contracting. He is an active member of the American Bar Association’s Section of Public Contract Law.

Gordon has a law degree from Harvard Law School. He also graduated from Oxford University in 1974 and Brandeis University in 1972. He also studied at universities in Tel-Aviv, Marburg and Munich in Germany, and in Paris.

About the Author

Matthew Weigelt is a freelance journalist who writes about acquisition and procurement.

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Reader comments

Wed, Sep 30, 2009 DR NY

Actually, this seems like a pretty decent pick. Way better a contracts attorney with a solid understanding of the procurement process than a bumbling political appointee/zealot who gets the job for being a good Chicago ward boss. I actually breathed a sigh of relief when I read this.

Wed, Sep 30, 2009

Mega dittos on that viewpoint !!!

Wed, Sep 30, 2009 M Reston

I predict this lawyer-bureaucrat is a little known when he leaves as when he arrived. This will be because he will not streamline or make transparent anything. His perspective as a lawyer and an unaccountable "inspector" virtually guarantees that he has no idea what tranparency, efficiency, or value really mean. I am confident in my prediction. And I hope I am wrong.

Tue, Sep 29, 2009

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