Blog, Videos and Podcast

State Department team gets Sammies nod for efforts to resettle Afghan refugees
July 7, 2022 |
18 minutes
For the Taliban-overran Afghanistan following the American pull out, tens of thousand of Afghans who had helped American forces, they had to flee. They came here. Today's guests responded to a sudden need for transportation, housing and other aid. Their State Department team are now finalists in this year's Service to American Medals program. Two of them joined the Federal Drive with Tom Temin in studio: Director of State's Refugee Processing Center Hilary Ingraham, and Domestic Resettlement Chief Holly Herrera.
A guy deep in the Defense Department is actually doing something about Chinese theft of US intellectual property
June 30, 2022 |
16 minutes
It’s become an unfunny joke. No matter what crucial intellectual property gets developed in the United States, it gets stolen by China or maybe Russia. A special team deep in the Defense Department has been working on one strategy to counteract this. It looks for investments in U.S. companies by suspicious foreigners. For his work collaborating with many other agencies, the team leader is a finalist in this year’s Service to America Medals program. The deputy director of the Office of Foreign Investment Review at DoD, David Rader joined the Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
How one federal executive swung into action when a civil war broke out in Africa
June 23, 2022 |
16 minutes
Sometimes nations declare war on themselves. When a civil war broke out in Ethiopia back in 2020, USAID worked overtime to ensure humanitarian aid got to those who were desperate for it, and to try and mitigate some of the human rights abuses. Now, a USAID Africa veteran Jonathan Dworken is a finalist in this year’s Service to America Medals Program. He’s the director of the office of East African affairs at USAID, and he joined Federal Drive with Tom Temin to talk about it.
There’s less drudgery at the Labor department thanks to this tech chief
June 16, 2022 |
9 minutes
She’s only in her mid- ’30s. But she’s already reduced paperwork and drudgery at the Labor Department. Now she’s a finalist in the emerging leaders category of this year’s Service to America Medals Program. Labor’s chief of emerging technology, Krista Kinnard, spoke with the Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
A small team at a small agency was at the center of rapid vaccine development and distribution
June 9, 2022 |
17 minutes
The Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, known as BARDA, isn’t a household name. But it was at the center of federal efforts to get COVID vaccines developed and into the market. A team of researchers are now finalists in this year’s Service to America Medals program. They are Dr. Rodney Wallace, director of diagnostics and devices, Dr. Kimberly Armstrong, therapeutics branch chief, Dr. Robert Johnson, director of medical countermeasures, and the director of BARDA, Dr. Gary Disbrow, who spoke with the Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
This highly specialized Justice Department manager helps 9/11 victims get what they were promised
June 2, 2022 |
17 minutes
More than two decades after the 9/11 attacks, some victims have not been compensated. This guest took over the Victim Compensation Fund when it was foundering a few years back. Now tens of thousands of people have received payments from the fund. Rupa Bhattacharyya is special master for the Sept. 11 Victim Compensation Fund at the Justice Department and a finalist in this year’s Service to America Medals program. She spoke to the Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
This State Department executive has spent a career fighting for human rights
May 26, 2022 |
15 minutes
If the State Department stands for human rights and dignity around the world, then Scott Busby stands at the center of the State Department for his career seeking to defend human rights and protect refugees. Federal Drive with Tom Temin talks to Busby, a finalist in this year’s Service to America Medals, and the deputy assistant secretary of state for the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor.
How one agency made sure vaccines and other COVID medicines reached the poor and underserved
May 19, 2022 |
17 minutes
When the government spent billions on health measures in response to the pandemic, officials worried whether enough would flow to the poor and vulnerable. Such people live in both urban and rural areas. This guest on the Federal Drive with Tom Temin coordinated the work to get millions of vaccines and other medications to community health centers. She’s the director of the Office of Quality Improvement at the Health Resources and Services Administration, and a finalist in this year’s Service to America Medals program, Dr. Suma Nair.
Meet the guy who got fixed NASA’s big telescope and made sure it got into space
May 12, 2022 |
17 minutes
The James Webb Space Telescope has been sending back mind-bending data since its launch last year. But a few years ago the project was mired in trouble. More than a decade late and billions of dollars over budget. My next came in and got it all back on track. He’s the James Webb program manager, and a finalist in this year’s Service to America Medals program. Gregory Robinson joined the Federal Drive with Tom Temin to discuss.
‘Tis the season to honor those who serve the country with distinction
May 5, 2022 |
18 minutes
It’s that time of year once again, the season to honor those who serve the country with distinction. The Partnership for Public Service has announced finalists in the Service to America Medals, or Sammies, program. This year there’s a special category for COVID-19 response. For more, the president and CEO of the Partnership, Max Stier spoke to the Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
Page header: Charles Bolden, former Administrator of NASA, interviewed backstage at the 2013 Sammies gala
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