About the Merit Systems Protection Board
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 are appointed to the MSPB for significant terms. 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. Update: Ms Grundmann tendered her resignation from the MSPB effective January 7th, 2017. Her intermediary replacement is expected to be Mr Mark A. Robbins.
• Member Mark A. Robbins: Mr Robbins was nominated by President Barack Obama on Dec 5, 2011, and confirmed by the Senate on April 26, 2012. He replaces Mary M. Rose as a board member. Mr Robbins previously worked as a senior provincial law advisor in Iraq prior to his appointment, and has a great deal of experience as the Executive Director of the White House Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board, besides other roles as General Counsel in the government, and practicing attorney in the private sector. His term ends on March 1, 2018.
Originally, the MSPB was made up of three board members, but the departure of Ms Anne Wagner (as the Vice Chairman) in April 2015, has now left only two board members to helm the MSPB board (currently only one with the departure of Susan Tsui Grundmann). In the event of a non-agreement among the two board members, the initial judgement of the Administrative Judge will be upheld instead, for the case that is being looked at.
The 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.