Lee to take FEMA spot

Deidre Lee will become acting deputy director of operations at the Federal Emergency Management Agency when she leaves the General Services Administration next month, according to an official announcement today.

GSA froze hiring in February and will offer early-outs and buyouts to about 400 employees as it seeks to save money due to decreasing revenues. GSA officials today estimate the hiring freeze will save about $10 million in this fiscal year.

Revenue for the Federal Technology Service, which is being merged into the Federal Acquisition Service with the Federal Supply Service, is projected to be $5.6 billion by the end of this fiscal year, and FSS' revenue is projected to be $3.7 billion by the year's end, according to GSA officials. GSA would not release more detailed financial records.

FTS’ information technology services revenue has fallen from $7.2 billion in fiscal 2004 to a projected $4.3 billion for fiscal 2006, a 40 percent drop.

Lee left the Defense Department in 2005 to become assistant commissioner for integrated technology services at GSA's FAS. She will now move to the role of acting deputy director of operations at FEMA, according to a memo from FEMA’s Acting Director R. David Paulison.

At FEMA, Lee will be responsible for overseeing and reinvigorating FEMA’s acquisition programs to aid its disaster response and recovery operations, Paulison’s memo states. She will also provide counsel to the Homeland Security Department’s chief procurement officer and the undersecretary for management.

Prior to joining GSA, Lee was the director of defense procurement and acquisition policy at the Defense Department, and she served as the Office of Management and Budget’s administrator for the Office of Federal Procurement Policy. Lee has also worked in procurement-related positions at NASA.

“Deidre’s talent, experience and leadership will be a valuable asset to FEMA and the department. I thank her for taking on this critical responsibility,” Paulison wrote.

Lee’s departure is another blow to the embattled GSA. Robert Suda recently left his post as the assistant commissioner for information technology solutions at GSA’s FTS to take a position at the Agriculture Department. The GSA has been without an agency administrator and administrator of FAS for months.

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