January 27, 1998
IRS Hires Executive Search Firm
to Seek Out New Advocate
WASHINGTON - As part of its efforts to improve customer
service, the Internal Revenue Service is for the first time looking
outside the agency for a new Taxpayer Advocate. The Taxpayer
Advocate reports directly to the Commissioner, and acts as the
"voice of the taxpayer." Toward that end, the IRS has hired
Korn/Ferry International, a worldwide executive search firm
specializing in management searches at the senior level, to provide
the IRS with qualified candidates for the position.
The Taxpayer Advocate is a crucial position in the IRS, as
it gives taxpayers an avenue for resolving problems that have not or
cannot be resolved through normal channels. The advocate is also
responsible for providing an independent report to Congress each
year identifying the most significant problems facing taxpayers and
actions (including legislation) proposed for addressing those
In awarding yesterday's contract, the IRS is breaking
tradition with hiring internally. In the past, the advocate position
has been filled from the IRS's executive ranks. "We are casting the
widest net possible for qualified candidates, and we are also
ensuring the taxpayers' perspective is truly represented," said IRS
Commissioner Charles 0. Rossotti. "I'm very pleased that the agency
has moved ahead so quickly to fulfill my commitment to Congress to
select an advocate from outside the IRS," he said.
The agency is looking for an independent-minded person with
significant customer service experience and a creative approach to
problem-solving. The contract calls for Korn/Ferry to provide the
IRS with at least two qualified candidates within 120 days.
The current Taxpayer Advocate, Lee Monks, has been selected
to be the new district director of the Arkansas/Oklahoma district.
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