By Isaac D. Pacheco
As the only leadership position of its kind among the federal government’s cabinet agencies, the deputy secretary of state for management and resources (D-MR) plays a unique role in overseeing the Department of State’s daily operations and long-term resource initiatives. D-MR is a co-equal partner with the deputy secretary of state (D), working in a chief operating officer capacity to advise the secretary of state on the Department’s allocation of resources and management activities.
Brian P. McKeon, a career attorney and long-serving national security advisor, was sworn into office March 19, and is only the fourth individual to serve as D-MR since the position’s creation by Congress in 2000. The position went unfilled during the George W. Bush and Trump administrations. The three previous appointees served during the Obama administration, beginning in 2009.
In his early months in office, McKeon has sought to bridge the trust gap between Department leadership and the workforce by prioritizing new initiatives that promote diversity, equity, and inclusion and by addressing employee concerns related to post-pandemic operations. Additionally, D-MR is working with leaders across the Department to ensure that it does a better job of retaining its talented workforce by providing employees with enhanced professional development and advancement opportunities.
McKeon addressed these and other important issues during a recent interview with State Magazine. He also took time to recognize how heroically Foreign Service, Civil Service, and locally employed staff members around the world have tackled their work amid the unprecedented challenges brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Click for a text transcript of the interview
Workforce During Pandemic
Department’s Daily Operations
Diversity and Inclusion
Implementing Executive Orders
Unique Leadership Role
Making Voices Heard
Ensuring Lasting Progress