Who is running the U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics? Former director Lawrence Greenfeld left the agency last week. The longtime agency official was essentially forced by the Bush administration to leave in a dispute over handling of a press release related to a report on racial profiling. Greenfeld is headed for the U.S. Bureau of Prisons. Although there has been no official announcement, insiders say that Maureen A. Henneberg, another longtime BJS official, is serving as acting director. The woman reportedly responsible for Greenfeld’s ouster, Tracy Henke, won a recess appointment as executive director of the Office of State and Local Government Coordination and Preparedness at the Department of Homeland Security, reports the Washington Post. Recess appointments typically go to nominees who are face difficulty winning Senate confirmation.
The likely candidate to head BJS during the remaining years of Bush’s presidency is Jeffrey Sedgwick, a longtime associate professor of political science at the University of Massachusetts. In 1984, Sedgwick worked at BJS as deputy director for data analysis. Sedgwick, 54, is a graduate of Kenyon College and has a Ph.D. from the University of Virginia. Outside of his BJS stint, he has no apparent recent record in the criminal justice area. With the Supreme Court nomination of Samuel Alito likely to occupy the Senate Judiciary Committee for some time, it is possible that Henneberg will run BJS for many weeks or months.