GSA Official Will Leave Agency in March

Dorothy Robyn previously headed the Pentagon’s Base Realignment and Closure office. Dorothy Robyn previously headed the Pentagon’s Base Realignment and Closure office. United States Army file photo

Dorothy Robyn, the top buildings management executive at the General Services Administration, will leave her post in March, the agency announced.

The commissioner of the Public Buildings Service who previously headed the Pentagon’s Base Realignment and Closure office cited frustrations with Congress and a desire to write about policy as reasons for leaving after 16 months in the job.

“I cannot thank Dorothy enough for her contributions to GSA,” said Administrator Dan Tangherlini. “Since Dorothy joined us, she has worked tirelessly to manage the more than 9,000 assets we hold in trust on behalf of the American people. Her commitment has not only helped us maintain those facilities but also enabled GSA to increase our capital investments, improve our business practices, and enhance the energy efficiency of our entire portfolio.”

Norman Dong, the acting U.S. controller at the Office of Management and Budget will replace Robyn, OMB confirmed on Thursday. “In his new position, Dong will have a leading role in the continued implementation of the administration’s initiatives to find savings and improve efficiency in the government’s real estate portfolio, such as the Freeze the Footprint initiative,” said OMB spokesman Frank Benenati. “He will remain at OMB until a replacement is in place.” 

The job Robyn took in September 2012 was vacated by Robert Peck, who was forced to step down after the scandal broke involving the Public Buildings Service’s lavish spending on a 2010 conference in Las Vegas.

In an interview with The Washington Post, Robyn said she was frustrated at the resistance in Congress to investing in cost-saving infrastructure improvements, as well as accounting policies “that make it difficult for us to follow best practices in the private sector.”

During her tenure, Robyn focused on leasing Washington’s historic Old Post Office building to Donald Trump for conversion to a luxury hotel, the sale of the Georgetown West Heating Plant, the impending selection of a new FBI headquarters site and the ongoing pursuit of energy-efficient buildings.

As deputy undersecretary of Defense for installations and environment, Robyn warned lawmakers after they declined the Obama administration’s proposal for a new round of BRAC closings that the Pentagon might be forced to resort to a closure process with less congressional oversight. “One reason we want to avoid that approach is that, if [Defense] acts outside of the BRAC process, the department is severely constrained in what it can do to help local communities,” she warned lawmakers at a March 2012 hearing. 

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

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

  • Going Agile:Revolutionizing Federal Digital Services Delivery

    Here’s one indication that times have changed: Harriet Tubman is going to be the next face of the twenty dollar bill. Another sign of change? The way in which the federal government arrived at that decision.

  • Cyber Risk Report: Cybercrime Trends from 2016

    In our first half 2016 cyber trends report, SurfWatch Labs threat intelligence analysts noted one key theme – the interconnected nature of cybercrime – and the second half of the year saw organizations continuing to struggle with that reality. The number of potential cyber threats, the pool of already compromised information, and the ease of finding increasingly sophisticated cybercriminal tools continued to snowball throughout the year.

  • Featured Content from RSA Conference: Dissed by NIST

    Learn more about the latest draft of the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology guidance document on authentication and lifecycle management.

  • GBC Issue Brief: The Future of 9-1-1

    A Look Into the Next Generation of Emergency Services

  • GBC Survey Report: Securing the Perimeters

    A candid survey on cybersecurity in state and local governments

  • The New IP: Moving Government Agencies Toward the Network of The Future

    Federal IT managers are looking to modernize legacy network infrastructures that are taxed by growing demands from mobile devices, video, vast amounts of data, and more. This issue brief discusses the federal government network landscape, as well as market, financial force drivers for network modernization.

  • eBook: State & Local Cybersecurity

    CenturyLink is committed to helping state and local governments meet their cybersecurity challenges. Towards that end, CenturyLink commissioned a study from the Government Business Council that looked at the perceptions, attitudes and experiences of state and local leaders around the cybersecurity issue. The results were surprising in a number of ways. Learn more about their findings and the ways in which state and local governments can combat cybersecurity threats with this eBook.


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