Liz Hempowicz is POGO’s vice president of policy and government affairs. Liz’s primary focus is on impact advocacy and ensuring that POGO’s policy, advocacy, and government affairs work reflects long-term and short-term strategic priorities. She oversees the work of POGO’s Center for Defense Information, Constitution Project, Ethics and Accountability Initiative, and Effective and Accountable Government Program. She develops and advances policy solutions to combat corruption and to promote openness and accountability in government.
Liz has participated in efforts to improve the Inspector General Act, the Whistleblower Protection Act, the National Emergencies Act, lobbying and congressional ethics rules, broader whistleblower protections, the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), and other government accountability initiatives. She communicates POGO’s priorities to a variety of stakeholders including lawmakers, executive officials, the media, and POGO’s civil society partners.
Liz is an expert on whistleblower protections, conflicts of interest, ethics, FOIA, separation of powers, and the National Emergencies Act. She has testified before Congress ten times, and has been cited in various news outlets including CNBC, the Associated Press, Fox News, NPR, the New York Times, Washington Post, WNYC’s On the Media, and Politico.
She earned her J.D. from American University’s Washington College of Law in 2014, where she served as the managing editor of the Legislation and Policy Brief. She earned a B.A. in international political economy and diplomacy at the University of Bridgeport in 2010, where she graduated magna cum laude. Liz is licensed to practice law in the State of New York.
Liz is a 2022 senior practitioner fellow at the University of Chicago’s Center for Effective Government, and serves as the vice president of the board of the DC Open Government Coalition.
- Appeared on CSPAN's Washington Journal to discuss the rights of and current protections afforded to whistleblowers, February 18, 2017.
- Testified in front of the House Subcommittee on Government Operations on the five year anniversary fo the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act and what further legislation is necessary to increase whistleblower protections and reduce retaliation.
- Nominated for Excellence in Advocacy in the Up and Coming Practitioner Category at the 2016 Professional Women in Advocacy Conference
- Testified in front of the Senate Committee on Veterans Affairs on bipartisan legislation introduced to hold supervisors at the VA responsible for retaliating against whistleblowers.
- Appeared on HuffPo Live's Free Speech Zone to discuss a new rule issued by the executive branch and the impact it could have on whistleblowers. (Starting at 9:30)
- Oped with POGO's Danielle Brian "Will you be punished for revealing classified info? Depends who you are"
- Oped with GAP's Shanna Devine in The Hill "Whistleblowers and the Prosecution Loophole"
- Addressed FOIA Professionals at the DOJ as part of a FOIA Best Practices Panel
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