About the National Archives

New Perspectives for the New Millennium: Addressing the Challenge of Managing Electronic Records

JOHN W. CARLIN, Archivist of the United States

Address to the
7th Annual Managing Electronic Records Conference
Chicago, Illinois
8:30 a.m. 29 September 1999


Well, here we are, nearly at the end of a conference that I've seen described as "best of breed." I believe that was intended to be a compliment. Certainly from my days long ago as a dairyman I'd take it to be. In any case, you've now completed some 25 sophisticated sessions on legal, technical, and operational issues in the management of electronic records. For a full two days you've reported to each other on highly technological developments, using high-tech means such as PowerPoint programs and big-screen projections to do it. And now here I am, definitely not an expert on technology, the law, or electronic records, coming near the end with my speech on ordinary paper, preparing to deliver it in about the same way speakers did in the Middle Ages.

So why me? What am I doing here?

I'm here because I head an agency of the federal government for which the issues you've been discussing are absolutely critical.

As Archivist of the United States I've been sued over electronic records issues. As the official charged with administering the Federal Records Act, I'm having to figure out how it applies to electronic records. And I'm head of an agency that has no challenge greater in the new millennium than how to cope with increasingly gigantic quantities of them.

If you read the description of this session in the program, you'll know that I worry about preserving and providing public access to several billion paper records along with more than 40 million non-textual items such as photos, films, recordings, maps, and charts, and even artifacts. That figure includes roughly 100,000 files of electronic records. But now that the government generates most of its records electronically, NARA is facing an avalanche of these new kinds of records in multiple forms. When the Clinton Administration ends, I'm going to become responsible for an estimated 24 million e-mail messages from the White House alone. And I can't even guess at the quantity of electronic records with which we at NARA are going to have to cope from all the 330-plus federal agencies, plus the federal courts throughout the country and Congressional committees.

NARA is clearly a major player in the electronic-records arena. And what we do is going to matter to others, public and private, large and small, just as what you do in meeting the challenges we share is going to matter to us. And that's why I and a lot of my staff are here.

I come to these issues as the administrator who has to create conditions under which NARA's electronic-records challenges can get resolved. I have to secure the resources that our technological experts need. And I have to get the right people together in the right way to achieve solutions.

In a long and varied career, I've learned something about what that takes. I've learned some lessons about what it takes in a government setting from being a former professor of public administration, head of a legislature, and governor of a state. But I've also learned from helping direct a private-sector technological company, in superconductivity, that dealt with research issues both theoretical and applied. And one of the things I've learned is that problems won't wait until all theoretical issues are settled. In fact the ever-changing nature of technology today means that new issues continuously arise--along with new technological possibilities for solving earlier problems. All this has made me a bottom-line, results-oriented administrator who believes that theory and application must go together and inform each other. And that's certainly so with electronic records, which are here, in need of attention, right now.

So while I'm not a lawyer, a records manager, or an IT expert, I and my agency are as deeply involved in electronic-records issues as anybody. Again, that's why I welcomed the invitation to come participate in this outstanding conference. And in this presentation I'm going to try to share with you: What exactly is NARA's role in dealing with electronic-records challenges? What is our strategy for meeting those challenges? What progress are we making? And why does it matter to you?

Most people, if they think about the National Archives at all, think of it as the big, grand building in downtown Washington, D.C. On that building, and on statues around it, there are inscriptions, one of which says: "What is Past is Prologue." Whenever I see that, I can't help but think of the experience shared by William O. Douglas, the former Supreme Court Justice, about riding in a cab one day up Pennsylvania Avenue past the Archives. Seeing the inscription, "'What is Past is Prologue," Douglas wondered out loud what it might mean. To which the cabbie replied, "It means you ain't seen nothin' yet."

Well, you ain't seen nothin' yet if that's all you've seen of the National Archives.

Like many people, you probably associate us with such famous documents as the Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution, and the Bill of Rights, which thousands of people view yearly in our rotunda. But we also play a critical role in protecting records that make it possible for citizens to document their rights and entitlements and hold public officials accountable for their actions. People from abroad come to see our Charters of Freedom but they are also coming in droves to see records in our holdings that enable them to trace assets looted by the Nazis from victims of the Holocaust. For these and other purposes, we are committed to preserving records in all formats and providing access to them for as long as needed.

Moreover, we do this far beyond Washington. We operate 34 facilities nationwide, which include our big new archives building in College Park, Maryland; our regional archives from Atlanta to Anchorage and Boston to San Bruno, and our ten Presidential libraries dating back to Hoover and Roosevelt.

However, our nationwide network also includes federal records centers. There we provide storage, retrieval, and other services on more than 20 million cubic feet of records that remain in the legal custody of federal agencies. In addition, we provide guidance to federal agencies on records management and disposition. In fact, I have no greater statutory responsibility as Archivist of the United States than to approve the disposition of federal records. For these reasons, our name has two parts. We are the National Archives--and Records Administration. And the second part is just as important as the first.

In meeting these responsibilities for electronic records, however, we have struggled in both our archival and records-management functions. As early as 1966, NARA formed a Committee on the Disposition of Machine-Readable Records, and by 1968 we had a Data Archives Staff, which in the 1970s began to accession computerized data files. Also, by 1972 we had produced a "Handbook of Recommended Environmental Conditions and Handling Procedures for Magnetic Tape" and had issued a General Records Disposition Schedule for automated records.

Much of our work was ground breaking at the time. But for various reasons, our efforts were outrun by the development of computer technology, the growth of its use within the government, and the expectations of records users outside. The latter challenged us, along with the Executive Office of the President, in the courts with the PROFS case, which resulted in a court order that required preservation in electronic form of certain records of the Reagan and Bush Administrations. And more recently, a district court voided our General Records Schedule 20, which had evolved over the years from our original guidance to agencies on the disposition of automated records, and was an effort to improve our practices following the PROFS case.

And for you, having been through five sessions here already on legal issues, you're probably not dying to hear that much about another one. So I'll limit this to the basic issue and the recent news. GRS 20 allowed agencies to dispose of certain electronic copies of e-mail, word-processing documents, and other computer-generated material if first saved by copying to a paper, microform, or electronic recordkeeping system. A district court ruled that GRS 20 did not adequately protect electronic records of value and that I had exceeded my authority in promulgating it. A court of appeals has just recently reversed the district court, upholding both my legal authority to issue GRS 20 and its propriety. I welcome the opportunity this decision provides to continue in an orderly way to develop practical, workable strategies and methods for managing and preserving records in the electronic age and ensuring ready access to them. But I share with the plaintiffs the view that GRS-20 was not ideal, and in fact we already are moving beyond it.

We've issued a bulletin that requires all federal agencies to account for electronic copies of records when scheduling new or unscheduled records. Additionally we've drafted a new general records schedule for information technology records, designed to replace the specific items in GRS 20 that formerly dealt with certain administrative records created in IT organizations. And responding specifically to the district court's nullification of GRS 20, we issued a bulletin setting deadlines for a government-wide review of all existing agency record schedules to schedule electronic copies created with office-automation applications. And we are now considering the status of that bulletin now that the original court order has been reversed.

Currently, agencies' capabilities for managing their electronic records are limited at best. Electronic records management software with recordkeeping functionality is only now being developed. Software available to manage electronic documents as records is a relatively recent development and, as is expected with all new technologies, agencies report mixed results. And we at NARA have not--I repeat, have not--developed sufficient guidance to enable agencies to undertake electronic recordkeeping initiatives with confidence that their time and money will be well spent. The draft guidance we have provided on requirements for electronic recordkeeping systems is dated and needs much work--work that we have started and on which, as I'll explain momentarily, some progress has been made.

Further complicating our ability to carry out our responsibilities are the competing agendas of constituencies that are all important. Some groups of records users want us to save virtually everything and make it accessible immediately, in electronic form. And why not? That makes it easy for them not only to do research but also to evaluate, now, actions for which public officials are accountable. However, look at it from the viewpoint of another group we serve, the federal agencies that generate the records. From top management on down, their focus is on the programs that they are charged--by law--with carrying out. Records management and all that entails is often not a primary concern.

Additionally, we must pay attention to a third constituency, consisting of the Congress and the White House. We depend on them for the money and the policy approvals we need to meet electronic records challenges. But they must deal with big-picture considerations involving politics, government-wide policy, and overall resource allocations.

In addition, some agencies want us to prescribe specific software solutions to meet their needs. Some records users want us, though we don't have statutory authority, to push agencies into electronic recordkeeping to meet their research needs. However, laws such as the Government Paperwork Elimination Act and E-FOIA, and agencies' own business needs, are leading them into electronic recordkeeping. And our role is not to dictate but to facilitate that transition so that agencies can leverage their technological innovations and not have to do official recordkeeping on paper and do everything else electronically. This includes recognizing the difference between a system that simply stores and allows retrieval of electronic records messages that meet the test of being federal records, and a true recordkeeping system that ensures that records have sufficient authenticity and reliability to meet all the agency's recordkeeping needs--administrative, legal, fiscal, and oversight, for as long as needed.

The issue then becomes how to relate electronic records management to records management overall.

In this, as in everything else, we are guided by a Strategic Plan that defines our fundamental mission and identifies the broad goals we want to achieve. For the citizen and the public servant, and for the President, the Congress, and the Courts, our mission is to ensure ready access to essential evidence, by which we mean records that document the rights, identities, and entitlements of citizens, the actions for which federal officials are responsible, and the national experience. Success will mean the following three things:

  • Essential evidence will be created, identified, appropriately scheduled, and managed for as long as needed.
  • Essential evidence will be easy to access regardless of where it is or where users are for as long as needed.
  • And all records will be in appropriate space for use as long as needed. All this applies to electronic as well as traditional records.
And our plan gives much attention to meeting electronic records challenges.

And what are some of the major challenges?

In general, electronic records pose the biggest challenge ever to recordkeeping in the Federal Government and elsewhere. How do we identify, manage, preserve, and provide on-going access to e-mail, word-processing documents, and other kinds of electronic records that are proliferating in formats, mushrooming in quantity, and vulnerable to quick deletion, media instability, and system obsolescence? There is no option to finding answers, however, because the alternative is irretrievable information, unverifiable documentation, diminished government accountability, and lost history.

Electronic records are here to stay; they are the present and the future. The Federal Government already is creating, keeping, and using them in large quantities. However, in most cases the government is not managing electronic records to the extent necessary for them to serve as the sole form of record for all aspects of its business or as the sole form of the archival record. NARA has traditionally focused on the preservation of those records that the agencies considered their "recordkeeping copies," and for documents such as memoranda and correspondence, most agencies still maintain most of their recordkeeping copies in paper.

As agencies develop electronic recordkeeping systems that preserve the reliability and authenticity of electronic records, NARA will have the confidence to treat them as the record copies. At the same time, NARA needs to develop the capability and the capacity to accession all those electronic records and to ensure their persistence, their authenticity, their reliability, and their accessibility over time.

In addition, we need to figure out how to embed records-management principles and practices into the everyday workflow of federal workers instead of as an afterthought. In the old paper days, there were file clerks. Today in the electronic era, we are all doing the filing.

Another challenge is to determine what solutions from the multiplicity of theories about long-term electronic-records management are practical in the real world. There are theories about content, context, structure, format over time, and accessible storage media that have never been tested in real life. They need to be tested rigorously to learn what works and what doesn't, as we are doing in projects I will mention, some of which are supported by NARA's grant-making affiliate, the National Historical Publications and Records Commission. And we still need proven methods for meeting over the long term the requirements for preserving and providing access to the widely diverse types of electronic records. The best tools available are inadequate for the size and complexity of the problems, which will only grow substantially in the future. We need a better grasp of the nature of the problems and the requirements for addressing them, and we need to bring to bear the best that technology and computer science have to offer.

For example, we need to deal with electronic records that are heavily dependent on the software that created them. Geographic information systems are an example, along with records from computer assisted engineering drawings and most forms of digital images. I know you've heard a discussion of dependency issues at this conference. And to sum up our experience since NARA started collecting electronic records in the early 70s, I'd put it this way: the progress of information technology has created an ever-widening gap in proven solutions for dealing with software dependencies over time. That's the hard reality.

For many years users have been creating records on their hard drives--hundreds of them--with no guidance. Now, when a summons arrives (an all-too-frequent occasion in Washington), how do you find the user-created files that might be on any one of 500 such obsolete hard drives? Once you've found them, how do you determine which ones are government records, instead of purely personal or political materials? Once you identify the government records, how do you distinguish those of value from transient records that should be destroyed? And if you select out the permanent electronic records, how do you relate them to the paper records you're preserving from the same offices? Also, once you've done all that, how do you deal with privacy information that properly should be withheld from release? Not a pretty picture!

And when I see that picture, I am reminded of an experience attributed to Winston Churchill. Late in his career, his speechmaking took him to a nationwide gathering where he was introduced by a woman who turned out to be a member of a temperance society. She described him glowingly, but concluded by saying that she wished he would correct one fault. "You drink too much," she said. "Why if all you drank were put into this room, the level would rise up to here"--and she pointed. He took a look as if he were contemplating a room full of alcoholic beverages, sighed, and then responded: "So much to do, and so little time to do it."

That certainly applies to electronic records challenges.

And to do all that needs to be done, the necessary strategy quickly became evident in our planning. We can meet the challenges only in partnership with others. We do not have--we will never have--the resources in dollars and in technical expertise to master electronic recordkeeping alone. We can bring to the table our long-developed understanding of records and recordkeeping needs. But we will succeed only by reaching out to others for financial collaboration and technological expertise--to the Administration, the Congress, other federal agencies, state and local governments dealing with the same problems, and not least of all, the private sector. We have in fact been doing exactly that. In fact, partnering is the strategy on which we're counting.

So, what progress are we making?

Let me start with funding, which concerns us all, and which makes possible so much else. The purse-string holders to whom we at NARA have to sell records management are the White House and the Congress. And I'm pleased to report with gratitude that we're having some success.

Now by no means do we have all the money we need to solve all problems. But our budget has been growing enough to enable us to do some catching up on electronic records work and have some resources to be viable partners. For example, we had a non-personnel base budget of $300,000 for working on electronic records issues in FY1997. In FY 1998, we received an additional $455,000, and in '99, $1,837,000 more, for a total carry forward base for FY 2000, starting Friday, of $2,607,000. In addition, we have received funds for filling 14 new positions to help in this critical area.

That's a significant increase over three years in support of initiatives to deal with electronic records issues. In a well-known committee report called Taking A Byte Out of History, the Congress itself called attention to electronic recordkeeping needs a few years ago, and we have happily found sympathetic partners among both Congressional Republicans and Democrats, and at the White House.

Moreover, appropriations from the Administration and the Congress to our grant-making affiliate, the National Historical Publications and Records Commission, have enabled it to fund a number of research-and-development projects in electronic records outside the federal government. Tim Slavin, who has spoken at this conference, knows about this, having directed an NHPRC-funded project, one of some 38 electronic-records projects since 1991.

Among them, NHPRC has made grants to the University of Pittsburgh for work to define functional requirements for electronic recordkeeping; to the state of Vermont, to the city of Philadelphia, and to Indiana University to experiment with the application of those requirements; and to the New York State Archives and Records Administration to analyze electronic recordkeeping practices and identify incentives for maintaining records in electronic forms. More recently, NHPRC made grants to the Kansas State Historical Society to develop and then update its "Electronic Records Management Guidelines"; to the Minnesota Historical Society to develop and publish "criteria for trustworthy government information systems"; and to the Association of Research Libraries and the Coalition for Networked Information to develop and test workshops bringing together teams of archivists and information technologists to explore electronic records issues.

In addition to partnering through NHPRC, NARA is working also in direct partnerships on a number of key issues. Some of you served on NARA's Electronic Records Work Group, composed of staff members from NARA and other agencies, and supported by outside expert consultants such as Bob Williams of Cohasset Associates. Last year the group provided recommendations, on the basis of which we at NARA, as I indicated earlier, subsequently issued guidance to federal agencies on scheduling how long to keep electronic copies of certain records that remain on an e-mail or word-processing system after a recordkeeping copy has been produced. We also developed changes to general records schedules that authorize the disposal of certain administrative records, regardless of physical format. And we are making progress on a new general records schedule for administrative records documenting the management of information technology; that is, administrative records generated in IT shops. This IT records schedule has had two rounds of review by the agencies, and when we have finished studying the comments, we will publish the resulting version in the Federal Register for public comment.

Additionally, with input from NARA staff members, the Department of Defense developed a set of baseline requirements for the management of its electronic records, and issued criteria for the design of computer software for use in electronic-records management. You had a discussion of this here in Bruce Miller's session on the DoD 5015.2 Standard. And after independent evaluation, we endorsed this standard as consistent with the Federal Records Act and of potential usefulness to other federal agencies. The standard does not answer all pertinent questions nor preclude other approaches, but it does provide a starting point for agencies that want to begin implementing electronic recordkeeping. Currently we are reviewing DoD's certification process for software meeting baseline requirements. And we are also working with DoD to extend their baseline, specifically to address requirements for managing records subject to national security classification.

Moreover, we've now launched a "Fast Track Guidance Development Project" to identify "best practices" currently available and to provide guidance quickly on electronic-records issues that urgently confront federal recordkeepers--guidance they can use while work goes forward on developing more complete and longer-term solutions. "Fast Track" is a collaborative project involving persons with relevant expertise from NARA's staff, individuals from other federal agencies with expertise in records management, systems development, and information technology, and expert consultants from outside the federal Government. And the Fast Track group has already endorsed the kind of checklist concept of requirements for electronic-records managers that Richard Fisher described in an earlier session here, and their first products will be ready for Web access, use, and comment relatively soon.

Also, and perhaps most far-reaching, we've launched a review with an eye to reinventing how records are scheduled in the Federal Government. The scheduling policies and processes developed during the 20th century and currently used by the Federal Government are based primarily on paper-based recordkeeping systems as they were used at mid-century. The reality, as you know, at the end of the 20th century is that most records are created electronically and may be maintained in a variety of media.

The goal of our policy review and reinvention project is to define what should be the Federal Government's policies, in the era of electronic information, on determining the disposition of federal records, the processes that will best implement those policies, and the tools that are needed to support the revised policies and processes. We must learn more about how the current system is really being used and what is really going on in practice. We must answer a number of basic policy questions about federal documentation, the goals and purposes of scheduling, the appraisal criteria to be used in determining appropriate retentions, and the respective roles of NARA, federal agencies, and the public in achieving the goals and making the process work effectively. Then we will be in the position to streamline and automate our processes. In all of this, we will be constantly aware of the implications of our decisions for agencies, NARA, and the Public. And we will involve these customers throughout the project.

At the same time, we are continuing our engagement in major research-and-development initiatives in partnership with other organizations inside the Federal Government, across the Nation, and around the world.

For example, we have collaborated with the Department of Defense in assessing standards for long-term retention of digital images. We are working with NASA on the development of the Open Archival Information System Reference Model. And NARA staff members have been raising recordkeeping issues within a federal interagency group looking at e-commerce, about which you had a session here with Frank Lambert. And our chief information officer is participating with the Collaborative Electronic Notebook Systems Association in a continuing effort to address issues related to electronic records in the interactions of government and industry around the world.

And clearly one of our most promising and exciting partnerships is the National Partnership for Advanced Computational Infrastructure that we entered into in 1998. Within this partnership, we asked the San Diego Supercomputer Center whether today's computer science and information technology can meet requirements for preserving electronic records reliably across generations of information technology. In response, the Center has proposed an information-management architecture for a persistent archives of electronic records that is scalable to millions of records, can accommodate a variety of formats, and will support continuing access to, and authentic presentation of, preserved records into the indefinite future.

The Supercomputer Center has tested prototypes of this architecture using a body of electronic records that reflects the diversity with which NARA contends. The test records included several databases, a geographic information system, office-automation files, digital images, and a million e-mail messages. The results have been so encouraging that we recently extended support for further refinement and development of this architecture. Other partners in this project are DARPA (the Department of Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) and the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. And we are working with the Supercomputer Center to develop a systematic approach to preserving and providing access to electronic records, using architecture so comprehensive that we call it the Electronic Records Archives--E-R-A, for short.

Now let me describe briefly two other major projects in which NARA is involved.

In June 1998, we at NARA hosted the inaugural meeting of what I am told is the largest international collaboration in archival research the world has ever seen. It's called the InterPARES project, which stands for International Research on Preservation of Authentic Records in Electronic Systems. InterPARES also happens to be Latin for "among equals," or so I'm told--Latin was not a required course in the dairy husbandry curriculum. The partners in this project, which has partial funding from NHPRC, include research teams from the U.S., Canada, Northern Europe, Italy, Asia, Australia, and global industry, joined by representatives of seven countries' national archives. This project is identifying fundamental requirements for preserving electronic records with authenticity and reliability across generations of information technology. And it is searching for archival practices and preservation methods suited to meeting these requirements, at the organizational, national and international levels. To date, the project has developed a rigorous methodology for intensive case studies of electronic systems. It has trained international teams of researchers in the application of this methodology. And it has launched pre-tests of the methods.

The other major research project I want to mention is with the Army Research Laboratory, with which we worked fruitfully earlier on the Defense Department's business-process reengineering of records management. Now we have asked ARL for advice on automated tools that could be used in archival processes, tools that can help agencies respond, for example, to special counsels' queries about what documents exist and where they are in great masses of electronic records. The Lab has engaged Dr. William Underwood of the Georgia Tech Research Institute, who has assembled a tool box of software products that both improve and speed up our processing of PC files. He is now developing recommendations about the applicability of a variety of knowledge-management methods to the control, processing, redaction, and release of electronic records. And he will help define tool sets that we can apply within the context of the Electronic Records Archives, once that system gets built.

In short, we may have in sight a way to archive electronic records in a comprehensive system providing both preservation and access for all data types without dependence on particular software or hardware. At least it now appears a practical possibility.

Thus in the last four years, we at NARA have been able to make progress in dealing with issues in electronic-records management. In 1995 when I was nominated to be Archivist of the U.S., I said at my confirmation hearing before the Senate that at NARA I would give electronic-records needs high priority. In speeches, articles, and testimony in '96 through '98, I described the problems and the initiatives we were developing to deal with them. And today, I find myself reporting actual progress. Through your work and NARA's, I believe we are going to be able to master the electronic-records challenges.

Recently I got a laugh from an Associated Press story about that. It quoted James Henderson, Maine's state archivist, who has helped with some NARA projects. He described electronic-records problems this way: "You're dependent on the machines. The machines are constantly changing, and the software is constantly changing, and the media on which the information is stored is constantly changing. In the good old days, when man was deciphering hieroglyphics on rocks, at least the rocks just stayed right there." Well, Jim, we just may be getting these new kinds of rocks to hold still again.

Anyway, you've now heard what we're doing at NARA and where we think it's getting us. I'd like to conclude by attempting to answer one last question: why does what we're doing matter to you?

I've already alluded to the self-evident reason, which is that in the management of electronic records all of us must learn from each other. Pressure from the courts, our customers, and our organizations' own business needs will increasingly require the development of electronic recordkeeping. But developing the technology requires more resources and more expertise than any one of our institutions is likely to have on its own. The progress we are making at NARA may help you, just as what you're doing and learning will certainly help us.

But I want to leave you with this larger point: What we're doing at NARA matters to you as citizens of this nation. Effective government records management, which in the 21st century means effective government electronic-records management, is critical if you want your rights to be protected and your government to be accountable to you as a citizen of a democracy.

Consider newspaper headlines you've recently been reading. You've read this year of the possible loss of Interior Department records needed to document entitlements to millions of dollars that may be owed to Native Americans. You've seen stories about a Pentagon inspector general's report that certain chemical weapons logs from the Persian Gulf War are missing--records that some veterans' representatives speculated might contain information on harmful chemical exposures. Even more recently, government memos have turned up supporting claims that workers were exposed to radiation hazards in a government uranium plant in Kentucky. And in the search for illumination on what really happened in the disaster that came out of the confrontation of the FBI and the Branch Davidians in Waco, Texas, a court has ordered all agencies of the government to search for relevant records.

Money, health, life and death--that's what's at stake in these cases. That's what's riding on government records being managed so that courts and citizens and the agencies themselves can find the records when they're urgently needed. Reliable recordkeeping is a major underpinning of public faith in our democratic institutions. And the latest survey indicates that only 22 percent of the public has substantial faith in the Federal Government. We in the government need to do everything we can to restore confidence, including improving public recordkeeping. Mastering electronic records is a necessity if NARA is going to ensure you and your descendants ready access to essential evidence.

Is it that much different for your institution, public or private? Documentation matters for your organization and for your customers or you wouldn't be here. And I hope I have made it clear that NARA is working hard to make sure that government documentation is maintained and made accessible. I've tried to explain what our role is in meeting the challenges of electronic recordkeeping, how we see those challenges, what strategy we are pursuing to deal with them, what progress we are making, and why it matters to the citizens of a democracy. Let's all keep working together on this, to meet our own needs, yes, but also to meet our country's need for documentary reliability and credibility from organizations of every kind.

Thank you very much.

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