[Congressional Record Volume 161, Number 92 (Wednesday, June 10, 2015)]
[Extensions of Remarks]
[Page E872]

                       HONORING RICHARD C. EHLKE


                       HON. DONALD S. BEYER, Jr.

                              of virginia

                    in the house of representatives

                        Wednesday, June 10, 2015

  Mr. BEYER. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to honor my constituent, Richard 
C. Ehlke, Senior Advisor to the Director and Senior Specialist, of the 
Congressional Research Service (CRS) of the Library of Congress. Mr. 
Ehlke retired on May 29, 2015 after a distinguished career of over four 
decades with CRS.
  During his tenure, Mr. Ehlke served in many roles at CRS. He began 
his career as a legislative attorney with the American Law Division of 
CRS, and Members of Congress and staff actively sought his thoughtful, 
objective analyses of some of the most complex and nuanced legal issues 
facing the Congress. His highly regarded and much relied upon briefs 
often focused on potential points of friction between Congress and the 
Executive Branch. At the behest of his Congressional clients, he 
analyzed the legal intricacies of legislative vetoes, Congressional 
access to agency and presidential information, the interplay of the 
President's constitutional powers under the Appointments Clause and of 
Congress' legislative and advice and consent prerogatives, and the 
transparency in government provided for by the Freedom of Information 
Act. He was routinely called upon by Congressional offices to clarify 
the legal complexities arising out of the federal government's 
relationship with Native Americans.
  Following his many years of providing direct legal counsel to 
Congress as a legislative attorney, Mr. Ehlke was promoted to serve as 
the head of CRS' American Law Division. In this role, he guided the 
work of a generation of Division attorneys and paralegal assistants, 
instilling in them the rigorous, careful legal research and analytical 
skills that had always been the hallmark of his own work. He was 
instrumental in establishing the Division's Law Recruit Program in 
1988, which has attracted new hires, contributing to a vibrant and 
diverse workforce of legislative attorneys.
  Following his tenure as head of the American Law Division, a 
succession of CRS Directors called upon Mr. Ehlke for his sage advice 
and leadership skills in the service of Congress in a number of 
critical roles. His accomplishments during this part of his career were 
significant. Mr. Ehlke played a leading role in the development of a 
new performance assessment system for CRS. He also advised the Director 
on the establishment of the position of Section Research Manager (SRM) 
(first-line supervisors) in the Service and assisted with the 
recruitment, hiring, orientation, and performance expectations of the 
initial cohort of these SRMs. Additionally he oversaw a complete 
redesign of the CRS website and served as a member of the website 
governance board to streamline services for our Congressional offices. 
Given his long-term interest in ensuring CRS' objective of providing 
the best service to Congress, Mr. Ehlke assisted with the 
Congressionally mandated CRS customer satisfaction survey. And as the 
Senior Advisor to the Director and as a Senior Specialist, he advised 
on significant legal issues relating to ethics, media policy, CRS 
relations with the Library of Congress, speech or debate privilege, CRS 
reorganizations, and personnel actions.
  Whatever his role, the result has always been the same--a highly 
competent, skillful performance for the benefit of Congress, its 
Members, and staff. CRS has been fortunate to have had such a person of 
high intellect dedicated to the institution's mission of providing 
objective, authoritative service to Congress in an unfailing patient 
and courteous manner for over forty years. We wish him the very best in 
his retirement, and thank him for his exceptional record of service to 
CRS and to the Congress of the United States.