Cathy L. Helm is the inspector general for the Smithsonian. She has the full responsibilities of an inspector general as set out in the Inspector General Act. Her office audits and investigations related to Smithsonian programs and operations; promotes efficiency and effectiveness within the Institution; prevents and detects cases of fraud, waste and abuse; makes recommendations regarding existing policies and regulations at the Smithsonian; and keeps Congress informed of her audits and investigations.
Previously, Helm was deputy inspector general at the U.S. Government Accountability Office and served in various roles there beginning in 1979. She became deputy inspector general in 2008; before that she was assistant director for the Office of Inspector General (2004–2008), assistant director for the Human Capital Office (2002–2004) and assistant director for the Natural Resources and Environment Team (1998–2002).
Helm graduated from George Washington University with a master’s in public administration in 1980. She earned her bachelor’s degree in 1978 at Western Kentucky University.
Helm is a federal employee and reports directly to the Smithsonian Board of Regents and Congress.
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