Acting Inspector General of the Defense Department: Who Is Lynne Halbrooks?
Saturday, July 28, 2012
Lynne Halbrooks became the Acting Inspector General for the Department of Defense on December 25, 2011, succeeding Gordon Heddell. The DoDIG is supposed to operate independently to prevent and detect fraud, waste, and abuse through audits and investigations, and is in charge of keeping the Secretary of Defense and the Congress informed about agency problems and deficiencies. In May 2012, the release of an internal report slamming the DoDIG Office’s handling of whistleblower reprisal cases provoked criticism from Congress and the media, which Halbrooks was able to partially deflect by pointing out that she had requested the report in the first place.
Born circa 1963 and raised in Aitken, Minnesota, Halbrooks earned a B.A. in Political Science and Philosophy at the University of Minnesota at Duluth in 1985, and earned a J.D. at Marquette Law School in 1988. After graduation, she clerked for the Minnesota Supreme Court, and worked in the Milwaukee law office of Hinshaw and Culbertson.
Halbrooks joined the Department of Justice in 1991 as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Eastern District of Wisconsin, where she prosecuted criminal cases and represented the government in civil litigation. She relocated to Washington D.C., to work in the Executive Office for United States Attorneys from 1993 to 2003, eventually serving as Deputy Director from 2000 to 2003. Halbrooks then joined the Legislative Branch, serving with the Sergeant at Arms in the United States Senate, first as General Counsel and later as the Deputy Sergeant at Arms, from May 2003 to January 2007. As a result of the 2006 elections, the Senate changed to Democratic control, leading to a complete change in the Sergeant at Arms office, the employees of which are political patronage positions. Halbrooks, however, was granted a soft landing by minority leader Senator Mitch McConnell (Kentucky), who appointed her as the Republican Representative to the Sergeant at Arms, a job she did from January to October 2007.
Halbrooks first joined the “IG community” when serving as General Counsel for the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction from October 2007 to February 2009. She joined the DoD Inspector General Office on March 1, 2009, to serve as General Counsel, which she did until she began service as Principal Deputy Inspector General on August 2, 2009.
Lynne Halbrooks and her husband, Kevin, live in Virginia, where she has become an avid golfer.
Lynne Halbrooks (Marquette Lawyer)
Acting Pentagon IG Answers Critics of Record on Whistleblowers (by Charles S. Clark, Government Executive)
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