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Developments

Nine Office of General Counsel Attorneys Admitted to the U.S. Supreme Court

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On Monday, November 9, 2012 General Counsel Cameron Kerry moved to admit nine attorneys from the Office of the General Counsel to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court.  Pictured with General Counsel Kerry are the following (from left to right):  George Kivork, Joseph Bartels, Michelle McClelland, John Broderick, Geovette Washington, Shraddha Upadhyaya, Kathryn Kempton, Michelle Branigan, and Megan Walline.

OGC CFC Kickoff Kickball Game

The Kerry CFC "Cam"-paigners and the Washington Whirlwind after their 3-3 tie kickball game in support of the Combined Federal Campaign

The Department of Commerce Office of the General Counsel kicked off their 2012 Combined Federal Campaign drive by hosting an office-wide CFC Kickoff Kickball game.  Celebrity guest, Acting Commerce Secretary Rebecca M. Blank, rolled out the first pitch to start a friendly but spirited competition pitting the Kerry CFC "Cam"-paigners, led by General Counsel Cameron Kerry, against the Washington Whirlwinds, captained by Deputy General Counsel Geovette Washington.  The teams battled to a 3-3 tied.  The real winner was the Combined Federal Campaign as the event raised awareness of the campaign and raised over $350 for the CFC undesignated fund.

General Counsel Kerry Delivers Remarks at Iraq Finance Conference

On June 27, 2012, General Counsel Cameron F. Kerry delivered remarks at the Iraq Finance Conference.  Below is a copy of his remarks.

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GC Kerry discusses the US approach to privacy at an American Chamber of Commerce event in Italy

Panel at American Chamber of Commerce event in Italy

On June 21, 2012, General Counsel Kerry attended a privacy event in Italy -- Data Protection and Privacy Regulation: What Impact on Businesses and Consumers?

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General Counsel Kerry Travels to the EU to Discuss US-EU Commercial Data Privacy Efforts

On June 20, General Counsel Cameron F. Kerry arrived in Rome, Italy for the second leg of his trip to Europe to engage with senior government and private sector officials on consumer data privacy.  As President Obama said in the Administration’s policy blueprint, Consumer Data Privacy in a Networked World: A Framework for Protecting Privacy and Promoting Innovation in the Global Digital Economy (Privacy Blueprint), “[n]ever has privacy been more important than today, in the age of the Internet, the World Wide Web and smart phones.”  The Commerce Department is committed to protecting consumer privacy while encouraging innovation, entrepreneurship, and supporting jobs and growth.

Commerce Department’s NTIA Announces First Privacy Multistakeholder Process Topic

Friday, the Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration announced the first topic for the multistakeholder process called for by the Obama Administration's Consumer Privacy Blueprint.  On July 12th, 2012, NTIA will convene stakeholders to begin developing codes of conduct to provide transparency in how companies providing applications and interactive services for mobile devices handle personal data.  More information about the first multistakeholder process is available at http://www.ntia.doc.gov/headlines/2012/first-privacy-multistakeholder-meeting-july-12-2012, and a blog post from NTIA Administrator Lawrence E. Strickling is available at http://www.ntia.doc.gov/blog/2012/putting-consumer-privacy-bill-rights-practice.

Office of Chief Counsel for Industry and Security Helps BIS Secure $1.75 Million Enforcement Settlement

On May 24, 2012, the Office of Chief Counsel for Industry and Security (OCC/IS) assisted the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) in reaching a settlement agreement under which Ericsson de Panama, S.A. agreed to pay $1.75 million to address 262 violations of the Export Administration Regulations (EAR).  BIS charged Ericsson de Panama with implementing a scheme to evade the EAR over a multi-year period, with regard to telecommunications equipment owned by the Cuban Government.  The equipment was shipped to Panama, where it was repackaged to conceal its Cuban markings, sent with falsified paperwork to the United States for repair or replacement, and then exported back to Cuba via transshipment through Panama.  The equipment involved is controlled under the EAR for national security, anti-terrorism, encryption, and sanctions reasons.  The settlement also requires an external audit of all 2012 transactions involving items subject to the EAR that are exported or re-exported to Cuban customers by Ericsson de Panama or any of its corporate affiliates. 

This settlement represents the latest in BIS’s enforcement efforts to ensure the integrity of the export control system.  BIS plays an integral part in advancing the nation’s security, foreign policy, and economic interests, and investigations and settlements like this one uphold this vital mission.  OCC/IS represents and supports BIS in all administrative enforcement matters. 

Commercial Law Development Program Assists Egypt in Revitalizing Its Civil Service and Increasing Transparency

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The Commercial Law Development Program (CLDP), a component of the Office of the General Counsel, met with the Egyptian Government as part of continuing efforts to help Egypt foster transparency, integrity, and ethical conduct within its ministries. This critical work is part of the larger Administration-wide effort to achieve the objectives set out by the Obama Administration and the G8 under the Deauville Partnership with Arab Countries in Transition.

On May 15, 2012, Assistant General Counsel for Administration Barbara Fredericks, Deputy Chief of the Labor and Employment Law Division John Guenther, and CLDP Chief Counsel Stephen Gardner delivered an anti-corruption presentation focused on addressing government, business, and development issues.  The program was attended by representatives of the Egyptian government, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), the media, and the general public.  Ms. Fredericks and Mr. Guenther discussed various ways in which Egypt can revitalize its civil service and open the lines of communication between the government and its citizens.  This presentation built on previous CLDP work with the Egyptian Government to create pilot projects with the Egyptian Trademark Office and the Egyptian Customs Authority to review ethics standards and general codes of conduct and to share expertise in best management practices. 

CLDP will continue working closely with the Egyptian Government on these issues as Department of Commerce attorneys provide guidance on draft regulations, deliver training to civil servants throughout the country, and serve as counselors to senior Egyptian officials that are working to create more functional, dependable, and transparent government services.  The work will benefit both Egyptian and U.S. businesses by fostering a level playing field as well as promoting transparency and fair regulations.

GC Kerry Testified Before Senate Commerce Committee

GC Kerry

On May 9, 2012, General Counsel Cameron F. Kerry testified before the Senate Commerce Committee at a hearing on The Need for Privacy Protections: Perspectives from the Administration and the Federal Trade Commission. Speaking on behalf of the Administration, Mr. Kerry called for baseline consumer privacy legislation giving the force of law to the Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights as articulated by the Administration’s privacy blueprint, Consumer Data Privacy in a Networked World: A Framework for Protecting Privacy and Promoting Innovation in the Global Digital Economy.

A video of the hearing and Mr. Kerry’s full written testimony can be found on the Senate Commerce Committee’s website.

Guidance Published on Implementation of Administration Policy on Scientific Integrity

On March 30, 2012 General Counsel Kerry updated prior memoranda implementing the Administration Policy on Scientific Integrity.  The update provides additional guidance consistent with the policy recommendations of Dr. John Holdren, Director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP), who issued an Administration policy on scientific integrity, implementing a Presidential memorandum of March 9, 2009.  In particular, the memorandum promotes the accurate and clear presentation of scientific and technological information to the public and further supports the professional development of Department personnel.  This memorandum establishes policy directives for the Department of Commerce to ensure the highest integrity of science and scientific products developed and utilized by the Department and its bureaus.  The updated memorandum and the December 6th and June 15th memoranda are attached below.

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