About ASAP


Start: 2006-12-17, Publication: 2012-11-09



Name:Owen Ambur


Name:American Society of Access Professionals


The American Society of Access Professionals (ASAP) is a nongovernmental, independent, educational, not-for-profit association. It was founded in 1980 by concerned federal government employees and private citizens working in the fields of information access through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), the Privacy Act (PA), and laws and regulations.


  • Access ProfessionalsAn access professional is a person who: * administers access laws by performing such functions as evaluating, selecting, or determining the information to be accessed; safeguarding information from unfair or illegal uses; advising on the accessibility of information; or adjudicating cases involving legal rights of access to information; * uses access laws in performing such functions as writing or some other journalistic endeavor which relies upon access to information covered by legal restraints; teaching about the laws, principles, practices, and regulations pertaining to information sciences; or representing the interests of those who claim rights of access to information; * promotes principles of fair information practice by performing such functions as encouraging the uniform administration of access laws; suggesting legislative or administrative changes regarding such laws; or testifying to facts which can lead to improved information practices; or * promotes citizen participation in government decision making by administering open meetings laws.

  • ASAP MembersARTICLE III - Membership -- Sec. 1. Qualification. All members shall be individuals, not firms or organizations. Any person may become a member of the Society upon payment of dues. All members agree to abide by the Society's Bylaws and to subscribe to the Society's Statement of Purposes as provided herein. Members are subject to dues payment as prescribed by the Board of Directors. Sec. 2. Membership Categories. Standard membership categories are defined as Regular, Student and Associate.

  • ASAP Regular MembersA Regular member is any individual who has an interest in the FOIA or Privacy Act, and does not fit into another membership category. A Regular member includes, but is not limited to, individuals who are practitioners, requestors, attorneys representing FOIA and privacy interests, academics, authors, consultants, and researchers. Regular members in good standing shall have voting privileges in the Society. Each Regular member is entitled to one vote. Any Regular member may hold elective office. Regular members shall receive all benefits of membership as such benefits are set forth by the Board, as well as any additional benefits as may be adopted by a majority vote of the Board of Directors.

  • ASAP Student MembersA Student member is any individual who is at least a part-time student. Student members shall have all the rights and privileges accorded to Regular members.

  • ASAP Associate MembersAn Associate member is any individual who is employed by a commercial vendor/contractor for the primary purpose of selling products or services to the access/privacy community (and in particular government agencies). Associate members shall have all the rights and privileges accorded to Regular members with the exception of holding elected office.

  • ASAP Special MembersSpecial Membership - Special categories of membership, such as Member Emeritus, Life, Honorary or Retired may, upon recommendation of the Board, be conferred upon a Regular member or other nominated individual under such terms as the national Board of Directors shall determine from time to time. Current Board members are ineligible for nomination. Persons holding special memberships shall have no voting rights, are not subject to dues payments and may not hold elected positions.

  • ASAP Board of DirectorsARTICLE IV - Board of Directors: Sec. 1. General Powers. The general management of the Society shall be vested in the Board. The Board may delegate such powers as it deems desirable to any officer, member or committee. Sec. 2. Responsibilities. Routine business shall be conducted by a quorum of the Board. The consent of a majority of the Board shall be necessary to effect or change policy and to commit large or significant expenditures. At all meetings of the Board a majority shall be present to constitute a quorum for the transaction of any business. The Board members present at a duly organized meeting may continue to transact business until adjournment, notwithstanding the withdrawal of enough members to have less than a quorum at the meeting. Sec. 3. Composition. The Society shall be governed by a nine?member Board of Directors ("Board") consisting of the President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer ("officers"), four Directors and the Immediate Past President. At least one member of the Board will be from a non-government entity. The officers and four Directors shall be elected by ballot of the general membership. Each member of the Board shall have one vote. Sec. 4. Terms of Office. The President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer shall be elected to one?year terms. The four Directors shall be elected to two?year terms. No person may serve on the Board for more than five consecutive years. None of the restrictions in these Bylaws shall prevent the Immediate Past President from serving on the Board following his or her term as President. The term of office shall be by calendar year. Sec. 5. Restrictions. No more than two persons from the same functional organization or agency may serve on the Board at the same time. Sec. 6. Meetings. The Board shall meet at the call of the President at least four times per year. Telephonic participation shall constitute presence in person at meetings. A majority of the members of the Board may call a special meeting for extraordinary reasons. Sec. 7. Vacancies. In the event of a vacancy on the Board, the remaining members of the Board shall by majority vote elect a person from the general membership to fill the unexpired term. Sec. 8. Removal. The Board shall have the power to remove from the Board any Director who is absent from more than two consecutive regular Board meetings. Removal shall be by a majority vote of the Board.

  • ASAP OfficersARTICLE V - Officers: Sec. 1. Elected Officers. The elected officers of the Society shall be President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer. New officers are elected by the membership and serve until their successors have been duly elected.

  • ASAP PresidentSec. 2. President. The President shall be the Chief Executive Officer, and shall preside at all meetings of the general membership and the Board. The President has the responsibility to assure the smooth functioning of the Society. The President has the power to convene meetings of the Board, present plans and alternatives for the Board's consideration and vote, and convene emergency meetings of the general membership. The President shall work closely with all committees to assure their smooth operation, and shall be an ex officio member of all committees.

  • Anne WeismannPRESIDENT -- Ms. Weismann serves as Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington's Chief Counsel. Prior to joining CREW, Ms. Weismann served as Deputy Chief of the Enforcement Bureau at the Federal Communications Commission, where she had responsibility for all of the Bureau's telecommunications matters. Before that, she worked in the Civil Division of the Department of Justice, where she served as an Assistant Branch Director with supervisory responsibility over banking litigation, housing litigation and, from 1995 until 2002, all government information litigation. This included litigation under the Freedom of Information Act, the Privacy Act, the Federal Advisory Committee Act and statutes governing federal and presidential records. Prior to that, she worked in the Solicitor's Office at the Department of Labor. Ms. Weismann currently serves as a president on the ASAP Board.

  • ASAP Vice PresidentSec. 3. Vice President. The Vice President shall exercise all powers of the President in the President's absence or incapacity and shall perform other duties as may be assigned by the President or Board. The Vice President shall automatically succeed to be president in the event that the office of president becomes vacant.

  • Joel D. MillerVICE PREISDENT -- Mr. Miller is an Assistant General Counsel in the FOIA Litigation Unit of the Office of the General Counsel of the FBI where he has been since July of 2004. During that period, he has been involved in several of the most significant FOIA litigations involving the FBI. Prior to joining the FBI, Mr. Miller served for 30 years as an Army Judge Advocate, retiring with the rank of Colonel. Elected as a Director of ASAP in 2009, Mr. Miller currently serves as Vice-President. He holds both BA and JD degrees from Rutgers University and an LLM from The George Washington University.

  • ASAP SecretarySec. 4. Secretary. The Secretary shall oversee the minutes and votes of all meetings of the Board and the general membership. The Secretary shall perform other duties as assigned by the Board.

  • Carmen L. MallonSECRETARY -- Ms. Mallon became the Chief of Staff of the Office of Information Policy of the United States Department of Justice in 2007. The Office of Information Policy (OIP) is responsible for developing guidance for Executive Branch agencies on the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), for ensuring that the President's FOIA Memorandum and the Attorney General's FOIA Guidelines are fully implemented across the government and for overseeing agency compliance with the law. OIP is also responsible for processing initial FOIA requests for the Senior Leadership Offices of the Department of Justice and for adjudicating all administrative FOIA appeals from denials for all forty components of the Department. Before becoming Chief of Staff, Ms. Mallon served for eight years as the Chief of the Initial Request Staff of OIP, where she was responsible for managing the processing of initial requests made to the Department's Senior Leadership Offices, including the Offices of the Attorney General, Deputy Attorney General, Associate Attorney General, Legal Policy, Public Affairs, Legislative Affairs and Intergovernmental and Public Liaison. As Chief of Staff of OIP, Ms. Mallon oversees the day-to-day operations of the Office and holds primary responsibility for the work performed by the IR Staff which includes serving as the denial authority for all IR Staff actions. Ms. Mallon has over twenty years of experience working with the Freedom of Information Act. She joined the Department of Justice's Civil Division in 1987 working in its FOIA office and then joined OIP in 1989 where she has held various positions. Ms. Mallon has taught courses on the FOIA for numerous federal agencies and the American Society of Access Professionals.

  • ASAP TreasurerSec. 5. Treasurer. The Treasurer shall be responsible for the Society's budget and monthly financial statements to the Board. The Treasurer shall present an annual financial statement to the membership. The Treasurer shall be responsible for the Society's books, make deposits, sign checks for expenditures, and collect and record dues and other income. The Treasurer is responsible for verifying the legitimacy of expenditures. The Treasurer shall also oversee the filing of the annual tax return. The Treasurer shall be an ex officio member of all committees. The Treasurer shall perform other duties as assigned by the Board.

  • Karen FinneganTREASURER -- Ms. Finnegan is the Deputy Director of the Office of Government Information Services (OGIS), which is part of the National Archives and Records Administration. OGIS's statutory mission is to serve as the government-wide Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Ombudsman, to review agencies' FOIA practices, procedures and compliance, to recommend policy changes to Congress and the President to improve the administration of FOIA, and to provide mediation services to resolve disputes between FOIA requesters and Federal agencies. Prior to serving in this position, Ms. Finnegan served as a Special Assistant U.S. Attorney assigned to the FOIA Staff of the Executive Office for United States Attorneys as well as its Privacy Act Officer. Prior to serving in this capacity, Ms. Finnegan was the Chief, FOIA/PA Branch, Office of Freedom of Information, in the Department of Defense. In this capacity, Ms. Finnegan supervised the processing of FOIA and Privacy Act requests seeking access to records maintained by the Office of the Secretary of Defense and the Joint Staff. Ms. Finnegan has also served as an Assistant General Counsel in the FOIA Litigation Unit, the Office of the General Counsel, at the Federal Bureau of Investigation and as an Attorney Advisor with the Office of Information Policy ("OIP") in the Department of Justice. Ms. Finnegan is currently serving as the Treasurer of the American Society of Access Professionals ("ASAP"), and served as President in 2007 and its Treasurer in 2002-2004 and 2008-2011. Ms. Finnegan also serves as an instructor in various OGIS, ASAP, and Department of Justice training programs.

  • Stephen McConnellIMMEDIATE PAST PRESIDENT -- Mr. McConnell is currently the Public Affairs Officer for the Naval Ordnance Test Unit, Department of the Navy. Until last year, he was the Principal Agency FOIA Officer, National Aeronautics and Space Administration. As NASA's FOIA Officer, Mr. McConnell is responsible for the agency's responses to access requests and establishing policy and procedures for a decentralized FOIA program. He has extensive FOIA experience; serving in past positions with US Army Criminal Investigation Command (CID), US Secret Service (USSS), and the Department of Agriculture (USDA). Mr. McConnell is the incumbent President and has served previously as a Director on ASAP's Board since 2007. As president, he has focused on increasing communications, membership, and attendance at both the National Conference and the Training Workshop. He has been part of the planning groups for the past three (3) ASAP National Training Conferences. Additionally, the ASAP newsletter has been reestablished with two editions published in 2009.

  • Cindy AllardDIRECTOR -- Ms. Allard is the Chief of the Office of the Secretary of Defense/Joint Staff Privacy Office and a member of the Defense Privacy Board. She has been an employee of the Department of Defense for 23 years and has worked for the Army, Navy and Air Force in both field activities and higher headquarters. Most recently, Cindy managed the FOIA and PA programs for the Defense Security Cooperation Agency. She currently serves on the ASAP Board of Directors and served as secretary in 2009.

  • Scott HodesDIRECTOR -- Mr. Hodes entered private practice in 2003. Prior to that, he spent over a decade working as an attorney for the federal government. Mr. Hodes worked for the Department of Labor, Department of Justice (Office of Information and Privacy) and the FBI. From 1998 to 2002 at the FBI, Mr. Hodes was the Acting Unit Chief of the Freedom of Information/Privacy Act Section's Litigation Unit and was a Top Secret Classification Authority. Mr. Hodes has been involved in thousands of FOIA and Privacy Act matters. Mr. Hodes is admitted to the bars of the District of Columbia and the State of Maryland, the United States District Court for the District of Columbia and the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. He has also been admitted pro hac vice to practice before other federal district courts. Mr. Hodes is a member of the American Society of Access Professionals and a contributor to a number of publications on matters dealing with government information policies and practices. Mr. Hodes currently practices civil matters, focusing primarily on the Freedom of Information and Privacy Act. Mr. Hodes received his J.D. from Arizona State University in 1989 and his B.S. in Accounting from Indiana University in 1986.

  • William H. HolzerlandDIRECTOR -- William H. (Bill) Holzerland serves as the Director, Division of Freedom of Information for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health. Prior to joining FDA, Holzerland worked at the newly formed Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), where he was the Senior FOIA Analyst and FOIA Public Liaison. In that role, he assisted the CFPB FOIA Manager in creating FOIA and Privacy Act (PA) policies, as well as reviewed and approved FOIA/PA cases processed by the Bureau’s analysts. Before joining the CFPB, Holzerland served at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Privacy Office as Associate Director, Disclosure Policy & FOIA Program Development, as well as the DHS FOIA Public Liaison. In this role, he assisted the DHS Chief & Deputy Chief FOIA Officers in formulating and disseminating Departmental FOIA and Privacy Act policy, among other duties. Holzerland, a Buffalo, New York native, earned a dual Bachelor of Arts in Journalism/Mass Communications and History from St. Bonaventure University. He is a 2013 J.D. candidate at the University of Baltimore School of Law.

  • Richard L. HuffDIRECTOR -- As a member of the Senior Executive Service, Mr. Huff served as one of two co-directors of the Office of Information and Privacy since the Office's creation in 1982 until his retirement in 2005. He was the official designated by the Attorney General to act on all administrative appeals from denials under the Freedom of Information Act and Privacy Act of 1974 by Department of Justice components. (The Department averaged over 3000 such administrative appeals each year.) He litigated and supervised FOIA cases at the district and appellate level and has testified before Congress on the implementation of the 1996 Electronic FOIA Amendments and on the interface between the FOIA and the Privacy Act. For twenty-three years he oversaw the development of the "Freedom of Information Act Guide & Privacy Act Overview," the Department of Justice's 1100-page treatise that was updated and distributed every other year to more than 22,000 recipients. He has also published several legal articles, including "A Preliminary Analysis of the Implementation of the Freedom of Information Reform Act." Mr. Huff came to the Department of Justice in 1976 after serving seven years on active duty in the Army; during his last reserve assignment he was assigned to the Army Judge Advocate General's Legal Center and School where he taught FOIA and Privacy Act subjects to military graduate students. He is now a retired colonel in the Army Reserve. Since retiring Mr. Huff has made one-, two-, and three-day training presentations for the Departments of Justice, Army, Commerce, and Homeland Security, as well as for the American Society of Access Professionals and the Graduate School, United States Department of Agriculture. Mr. Huff received a B.A. from Stanford, an M.A. from St. Mary's University, a Juris Doctor from Hastings College of the Law, and a Master of Laws from Georgetown University.

  • Jeffrey ParrilloDIRECTOR -- After two and a half years as a Privacy/FOIA Officer in the Veterans Administration Boston Healthcare System, Mr. Parrillo joined the VHA FOIA Office on February 27, 2011. He also spent two years as the VISN 1 FOIA Officer and Alternate VISN 1 Privacy Officer. He has been a member of the VHA Privacy Advisory Council (PAC). Previous to his career with the VA, he managed a busy outpatient hematology/oncology clinic at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, a large Harvard University-affiliated teaching hospital in Boston. Additionally, he has nine years of long term care management experience, and from 1999-2002, he served in various roles on the Board of Directors for the Rhode Island Public Health Association.

  • Aaron WieczorekDIRECTOR -- Mr. Wieczorek is an attorney-advisor for EPA. Previously he attended law school where, in addition to serving as the elected Editor-in-Chief of a large law journal, he spent time working for state governments, the Department of Justice, and the Environmental Protection Agency in various capacities and locations. Prior to this, a native Texan with a B.S. in Economics, he relocated to the DC-area originally to work at Freedom House, a large 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization where his duties included general policy memoranda, and accounting/financial statements.

  • ASAP CommitteesARTICLE VI - Committees: Sec. 1. Committees. The Board shall establish Nominating and Tellers Committees. The Board may establish Training, Symposium, and Luncheon committees. The Board may create other committees as needed on a standing or ad hoc basis. Sec. 2. Chairs. With the approval of the Board, the President shall appoint the chairs for all committees. Sec. 3. Committee Members. The chairs of all committees shall appoint their committee members. Sec. 4. Committee Structure. Each committee shall operate pursuant to the purpose and function as approved by the Board.

  • Requester CommunityThe requester community includes private citizens, law firms, businesses, media and nonprofit organizations; it is not a government agency.

  • Private Citizens

  • Law Firms

  • Businesses

  • Media

  • Nonprofit Organizations