On behalf of the members of the Public Interest Declassification Board, I would like to congratulate Miriam Nisbet on the eve of her retirement from Federal service. Throughout her Federal career, she served with distinction as a tireless advocate for transparency and access to government records. We first met Ms. Nisbet in her role as the first Director of the Office of Government Information Services (OGIS). We were impressed with her vision of OGIS as the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) ombudsman to provide mediation services to resolve disputes between FOIA requesters and Executive branch agencies. Those familiar with open government and transparency advocacy regard Ms. Nisbet as a trusted advocate for the proper administration of FOIA, as Archivist of the United States, David Ferriero noted in his announcement Ms. Nisbet’s retirement.
I want to thank Ms. Nisbet personally for her support of our work to develop recommendations to modernize and transform the security classification system. Many similar challenges exist that impede the declassification process and the administration of the FOIA at agencies, and we are grateful to Ms. Nisbet and the staff at OGIS for recognizing that limiting secrecy to the minimum necessary for the national security assists both the agencies and the public in their efforts to access and manage government information.
The members join me in thanking her for her wise counsel and her work to increase transparency and access to government records. We wish her all the best in her retirement.