Choosing CRS’s Next Director


Want to be the next Director of the Congressional Research Service? This past Monday, the Library of Congress posted a job announcement.

The duties are deceptively simple:

The Director of CRS leads the Service in the research and analysis that supports congressional deliberations on the issues facing the nation. The Director works under the general direction of the Librarian of Congress, reporting on the provision of congressional services and other operational matters, consulting with him on major policy issues, and keeping him informed of significant developments affecting the Service and the Library of Congress.

It’s up to the Librarian of Congress to appoint the Director, after consulting with the Joint Committee on the Library. For a taste of the incoming director’s challenges, watch this discussion on the future of CRS, hosted by the Advisory Committee on Transparency in May.

A coalition of organizations (including Sunlight) wrote to the Librarian in February to “ask you to appoint a Director of CRS who will help advance the goal of online free public access to CRS reports.” It’s worth reading the letter in full.

As I outlined earlier this year, it was the last director, and not federal law, that has worked to keep these reports from the public. It’s time to restore the public’s access to CRS reports, and the best way to start is with a new director committed to meeting the needs of Members of Congress and those who elect them.

Letter to Billington on Public Access to CRS Report