Special Delivery

Several weeks before December 2010 Tunisian protests triggered a wave of unrest that spread to other Arab countries, Shane Morris was given the job of ensuring that packages of classified material moved securely between U.S. embassies. Her experience personally escorting State Department pouches in the Middle East and Africa helped in her new role as a supervisor in the Diplomatic Courier Service during the Arab spring. 

Morris’ time on the ground equipped her to find creative inroads when traditional routes were blocked. “We have very stringent security requirements,” she says. “The pouches—you go where they go.”

When access to Bahrain was cut off due to political uprisings, Morris quickly found an alternative and organized a meeting between local airport authorities and U.S. personnel to ensure, for the first time ever, that diplomatic couriers had tarmac access in the United Arab Emirates. 

“The toughest part is to manage the changes when something falls through,” she says. “We’re forced to use new ways of thinking.”

Fighting the tendency to use the same tried-and-true methods can be tough in the government, which frequently favors the routine. For her achievements, Morris, who recently turned 30, is a finalist for the Service to America Medals Call to Service honor. 

“It’s amazing just how much you can achieve when you don’t have the luxury of no for an answer,” she says.

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Sponsored by G Suite

    Cross-Agency Teamwork, Anytime and Anywhere

    Dan McCrae, director of IT service delivery division, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

    Download
  • Data-Centric Security vs. Database-Level Security

    Database-level encryption had its origins in the 1990s and early 2000s in response to very basic risks which largely revolved around the theft of servers, backup tapes and other physical-layer assets. As noted in Verizon’s 2014, Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR)1, threats today are far more advanced and dangerous.

    Download
  • Sponsored by One Identity

    One Nation Under Guard: Securing User Identities Across State and Local Government

    In 2016, the government can expect even more sophisticated threats on the horizon, making it all the more imperative that agencies enforce proper identity and access management (IAM) practices. In order to better measure the current state of IAM at the state and local level, Government Business Council (GBC) conducted an in-depth research study of state and local employees.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    The Next Federal Evolution of Cloud

    This GBC report explains the evolution of cloud computing in federal government, and provides an outlook for the future of the cloud in government IT.

    Download
  • Sponsored by LTC Partners, administrators of the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program

    Approaching the Brink of Federal Retirement

    Approximately 10,000 baby boomers are reaching retirement age per day, and a growing number of federal employees are preparing themselves for the next chapter of their lives. Learn how to tackle the challenges that today's workforce faces in laying the groundwork for a smooth and secure retirement.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Hewlett Packard Enterprise

    Cyber Defense 101: Arming the Next Generation of Government Employees

    Read this issue brief to learn about the sector's most potent challenges in the new cyber landscape and how government organizations are building a robust, threat-aware infrastructure

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    GBC Issue Brief: Cultivating Digital Services in the Federal Landscape

    Read this GBC issue brief to learn more about the current state of digital services in the government, and how key players are pushing enhancements towards a user-centric approach.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.