Job goal: Make paper smarter, more secure

Larry Jellen doesn't exist, at least not on any official record. And that is ironic considering that he heads the Government Printing Office's security and intelligent documents operation.Although he is known as Larry, he has given up trying to use that name and officially goes by Clarence "Larry" Jellen instead, which makes life easier for those trying to confirm his identity.

As the GPO official in charge of developing e-passports, Jellen cares about identifying people accurately. He is responsible for marketing e-passports; radio frequency identification (RFID) tags; watermarks; special threads, which are embedded in paper to enhance the security of a document; and other intelligent document technologies. It's a growth area for the federal government, he said.

Jellen heads a new department at GPO, so he must start from scratch on securing paper using technology. "The biggest challenge is just getting the word out to the agencies that the GPO has expertise in this area," he said. "A majority of people think we print the money."

To promote GPO's secure document services, Jellen said he plans to hold a series of meetings with Cabinet members and Public Printer Bruce James. He will also conduct a conference with the Homeland Security Department, the FBI and the Secret Service this spring.

Jellen plans to brief officials from these agencies on security inks, birth certificate security and other features of intelligent documents. His pitch is that GPO can provide everything from consulting expertise to the actual production of documents containing simple watermarks or passports with embedded chips.

Many of Jellen's ideas on securing documents electronically come from overseas. European countries have to bridge various cultures and languages to verify the identities of people traveling across borders, which is even trickier than securing identities across states. To handle the situation, Europe speaks the universal language of electronics.

Jellen said he took his smart card ideas from the Europeans after visiting Sweden, Spain, Germany and France. "They have euros, but it's a challenge for them as well," he said. "A lot of the chip designs [come out] of the use of bank cards and driver's licenses."

Former colleagues at Time-Life say Jellen will have no problem selling intelligent documents. He was president of Time-Life Books and Time-Life Direct, in Alexandria, Va., before joining GPO as a consultant in the New Business Development Office in September 2003.

Peter Toth, former vice president of marketing at Time-Life, said Jellen is able to identify interesting ideas that have potential and sell them. "He's a good salesman," Toth said.

He added that Jellen's patience is a valuable trait for a government official to have. "He's comfortable with delays and going back and forth," Toth said. "He doesn't get frustrated easily."

Jellen's publishing experience at Time-Life should also serve him well in his new capacity. He is still involved in the business of printing, but this time, the ink will go on passports, smart cards, RFID tags and visitor badge systems.

Jellen is at his best when he is creating business plans, his former colleagues say. His experience at Time-Life taught Jellen how to translate ideas into profits. He published successful do-it-yourself books on home improvements and cooking.

His business skills fit right into his job at GPO, which is to translate talk about RFID into sales of government documents. His pitch is simple. "Do you use

E-ZPass [to pay highway tolls]? That uses RFID."

Bob Tapella, GPO's chief of staff, hired Jellen. Tapella said Jellen has skills that the office needed, adding that "what Larry has been able to do is identify some of the absolute core competencies of GPO."

Jellen views the challenges at GPO as rewarding. "There's that element of that James Bond kind of thing with security and intelligence," he said, "There's never a dull moment."

NEXT STORY: Clashing over cards

X
This website uses cookies to enhance user experience and to analyze performance and traffic on our website. We also share information about your use of our site with our social media, advertising and analytics partners. Learn More / Do Not Sell My Personal Information
Accept Cookies
X
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Do Not Sell My Personal Information

When you visit our website, we store cookies on your browser to collect information. The information collected might relate to you, your preferences or your device, and is mostly used to make the site work as you expect it to and to provide a more personalized web experience. However, you can choose not to allow certain types of cookies, which may impact your experience of the site and the services we are able to offer. Click on the different category headings to find out more and change our default settings according to your preference. You cannot opt-out of our First Party Strictly Necessary Cookies as they are deployed in order to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting the cookie banner and remembering your settings, to log into your account, to redirect you when you log out, etc.). For more information about the First and Third Party Cookies used please follow this link.

Allow All Cookies

Manage Consent Preferences

Strictly Necessary Cookies - Always Active

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data, Targeting & Social Media Cookies

Under the California Consumer Privacy Act, you have the right to opt-out of the sale of your personal information to third parties. These cookies collect information for analytics and to personalize your experience with targeted ads. You may exercise your right to opt out of the sale of personal information by using this toggle switch. If you opt out we will not be able to offer you personalised ads and will not hand over your personal information to any third parties. Additionally, you may contact our legal department for further clarification about your rights as a California consumer by using this Exercise My Rights link

If you have enabled privacy controls on your browser (such as a plugin), we have to take that as a valid request to opt-out. Therefore we would not be able to track your activity through the web. This may affect our ability to personalize ads according to your preferences.

Targeting cookies may be set through our site by our advertising partners. They may be used by those companies to build a profile of your interests and show you relevant adverts on other sites. They do not store directly personal information, but are based on uniquely identifying your browser and internet device. If you do not allow these cookies, you will experience less targeted advertising.

Social media cookies are set by a range of social media services that we have added to the site to enable you to share our content with your friends and networks. They are capable of tracking your browser across other sites and building up a profile of your interests. This may impact the content and messages you see on other websites you visit. If you do not allow these cookies you may not be able to use or see these sharing tools.

If you want to opt out of all of our lead reports and lists, please submit a privacy request at our Do Not Sell page.

Save Settings
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Cookie List

A cookie is a small piece of data (text file) that a website – when visited by a user – asks your browser to store on your device in order to remember information about you, such as your language preference or login information. Those cookies are set by us and called first-party cookies. We also use third-party cookies – which are cookies from a domain different than the domain of the website you are visiting – for our advertising and marketing efforts. More specifically, we use cookies and other tracking technologies for the following purposes:

Strictly Necessary Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Functional Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Performance Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Social Media Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Targeting Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.