Federal 100: Pivotal players

Forms to nominate individuals for this year's Federal 100 awards appear in this issue. This is the eighth year this newspaper has sponsored the program which is designed to recognize those people in government and industry who have played pivotal roles in the federal world of information technology in 1996. Each year we emphasize that the key to winning is demonstrating clearly that the nominee made a difference - not just that the person did well at what his or her job demanded. This award is about extraordinary effort and commitment.

We depend on our more than 75 000 readers to bring forward names from outside Washington D.C. and outside the headquarters units - names that may not be as well-known as those that appear more frequently on our news pages. And each year we hear stories of imagination of creating tools when there is no money to buy them of new solutions and energy applied to old problems.

From the hundreds of names sent to us the final selection is made by an independent panel of judges. Each year we wonder whether we will find 100 truly deserving winners and each year we have trouble narrowing the list to that number.

So once again we invite our readers to reflect on the year that is coming to a close. What were the major changes this year and who were the people responsible for them? What creative approach changed the way government acquired computers and communications technology?

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