Management

OPM names leaders to transform background investigations

The Office of Personnel Management named the transition team that will usher in reforms to the government's background check process.

After IT security weaknesses led to a massive exfiltration of background investigations held by OPM, the agency moved to restructure the process and bring in the Department of Defense to ensure a level of cybersecurity.

The newly established National Background Investigations Bureau (NBIB) will still be housed at OPM, with DoD acting in an IT support capacity. On March 18, OPM announced the appointment of James Onusko to serve as NBIB transition team leader and Christy Wilder as the team's deputy manager.

Onusko joins OPM from the Veterans Affairs Department, where he managed security clearance operations as executive director of personnel security and identity management since 2013. Prior to VA, he served in a similar capacity for the State Department starting in 2004.

Deputy Manager Wilder brings her experience working for the director of national intelligence in the National Counterintelligence and Security Center's Office of Legislative Affairs.

Before joining ODNI, Wilder did a five-year stint at OPM's Federal Investigative Services, the bureau that currently manages background investigations and will be replaced by NBIB.

Together, Onusko and Wilder will lead a full transition team made up of representatives from several agencies connected to the clearance process.

"The transition team will be focused on standing up NBIB in a way that strengthens how the federal government conducts background investigations and protects vital information," OPM Press Secretary Sam Schumach said, confirming the appointments.

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