Mr. Windsor, I presume

Mr. Windsor, I presume

Richard Windsor was good at his job. In fact, he was too good to be true.

Federal bureaucrat Richard Windsor was such an excellent employee that, as the old saying goes, if he didn't exist someone would have to invent him.

In fact, he didn't exist. Windsor was the email alias conceived by former U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Director Lisa Jackson. She used Windsor's name in place of her own to avoid media scrutiny of her official communications.

The discovery of Jackson's behavior earlier this year led to her shotgun resignation amid suspicions that she was trying to fly under the radar in the self-proclaimed most transparent presidential administration in history.

Well, Jackson may be gone. But Windsor's legacy lives on.

The fictitious character has been repeatedly honored by the agency for outstanding performance. Windsor was cited for satisfactorily completing email records management training, for completing the "No FEAR Act Training Module" and for completing a "cybersecurity awareness training court." Most deliciously, Windsor may have been created to throw up an unethical smoke screen designed to evade media scrutiny, but he was for three years running lauded as a "scholar of ethical behavior."

The EPA explained its decision to honor a fictitious character by pointing out that Jackson must have taken the agency courses using her fictitious name in addition to writing what she hoped would be untraceable emails using a fictitious name.

In light of the discovery of Jackson's subterfuge, the EPA is requiring all its employee to retake training regarding transparency. Specifically, they're being taught how to properly store email and computer messages. Taxpayers can only hope they adopt Windsor's fine example in their effort to become even better and more open public servants.

Sections (2):Editorials, Opinion

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