Mocny tapped to lead U.S. Visit program

Homeland Security Department secretary Michael Chertoff has appointed Robert A. Mocny acting director of the U.S. Visitor and Immigrant Status Indicator Technology program. He formerly was the U.S. Visit program's deputy director.

Mocny succeeds Jim Williams, who recently joined the General Services Administration as commissioner of the Federal Acquisition Service.

"As deputy director of US-VISIT since 2003, Mocny was led the day-to-day operations of the program," DHS said in a statement.

Mocny worked closely with Williams during the U.S. Visit program's rollout of biometric systems at hundreds of border crossing points and at diplomatic posts worldwide.

He has worked for years to weave together, and frequently to simplify, the complex "system of systems" that serves as the border system's computer ganglia. The system links a broad array of agencies and their skein of databases that include traveler and threat details, as well as immigration status facts and related information.

Mocny started with INS in 1989 as an immigration inspector in San Francisco, where he developed several systems later adopted by the agency for nationwide use. Later, he traveled throughout Europe and the former Soviet Union as an INS special operations inspector providing training on how to detect document fraud.

When he joined INS' Washington headquarters office, Mocny led the creation of a dedicated commuter lane system called Secure Electronic Network for Traveler's Rapid Inspection, more commonly known as SENTRI, for land border crossings.

His additional promotions within INS included jobs special assistant to the agency's deputy commissioner and deputy assistant commissioner for the Office of Inspections. Mocny rose to the job of acting assistant commissioner and assistant chief inspector starting in May 2001.

Wilson P. Dizard III is a staff writer for Washington Technology's sister publication, Government Computer News.

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