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What is the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB)?

The federal Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB) exists to protect the rights of federal civil service employees. The MSPB is designed to be independent of partisan politics and to provide federal employees with an opportunity to appeal adverse and unfair personnel decisions. In order to fulfill its role as an independent and fair system, the MSPB has been carefully organized and its board members have been appointed by the President of the United States.

Organization of the MSPB

In order to understand how your appeal will be processed and decided, it is important to understand how the MSPB is organized. The board members serve in the central Washington D.C. Office where the MSPB is headquartered. Many of the appeals and studies that are conducted by the MSPB occur in Washington where many federal workers are employed.

However, the MSPB recognizes that the federal government employs people in all areas of the country. Accordingly, there are MSPB regional offices in Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Philadelphia, and San Francisco. There are also field offices in Denver and New York. Administrative law judges hear and decide cases in these offices to make the MSPB process accessible to local federal workers and agencies.

Board Members

Board members are appointed to the MSPB for significant terms. Barring any premature departures from the Board, the next appointment of an MSPB Board Member will be in March 2011. The current Board includes:

Chairman Susan Tsui Grundmann: Ms. Grundmann was appointed by President Barack Obama. She was confirmed by the United States Senate in November 2009 and her term will run until March 2016. Ms. Grundmann is an attorney with extensive employment law experience. Before taking the position with the MSPB, Ms. Grundmann was general counsel to the National Federation of Federal Employees.

Vice Chairman Anne Wagner: Ms. Wagner was also appointed by President Barack Obama. She was confirmed by the United States Senate in November 2009 and her term will run until March 2014. Like Ms. Grundmann, Ms. Wagner is a distinguished lawyer. She served as General Counsel of the Personnel Appeals Board of the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) prior to accepting the job as MSPB vice chairman.

Member Mary M. Rose: Ms. Rose is currently the longest standing member of the MSPB having been appointed by President George W. Bush. Her term began in December 2005 and is set to expire in March 2011. Ms. Rose is a Registered Nurse. She had several positions with significant responsibilities for government personnel prior to joining the MSPB. Her most recent position prior to joining the MSPB was Vice Chairman of the Federal Salary Council.

The three member board is charged with fulfilling the mission of the MSPB - to protect the federal merit system and the employees of that system. The Board, together with the counsel, administrative law judges, central office staff and regional staff employed by the MSPB all play a large role in implementing the MSPB procedures to achieve that mission.