Clark County duo helps U.S. Selective Service System earn high scores

Former State Senator Don Benton and Prairie High School graduate Wadi Yakhour each contributed to agency being ranked as most improved in the Federal Government

The U.S. Selective Service System was determined by the 2019 Best Places to Work in the Federal Government rankings as the most improved agency.  The overall employee engagement score is calculated by the Partnership for Public Service and Boston Consulting Group.

Don Benton moved to Washington, D.C. in 2017, where he served briefly as senior White House advisor to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). In May 2017, he was appointed as 13th director of the Selective Service System. Photo courtesy of U.S. Selective Service System
Don Benton moved to Washington, D.C. in 2017, where he served briefly as senior White House advisor to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). In May 2017, he was appointed as 13th director of the Selective Service System. Photo courtesy of U.S. Selective Service System

The 2019 Best Places to Work survey included 70 federal agencies and 490 subcomponents.   This government-wide analysis began in 2003 and takes place every year measuring employee ratings of their agency. Categories include effective leadership, teamwork, strategic management, employee recognition, and more.

Don Benton
Don Benton

“I’m proud of the incredible performance by our employees, and I let them know it,” SSS Director Donald M. Benton said.  “I believe the improved ranking of our agency comes from our focus on a well-defined mission and renewed emphasis on productive teamwork and incorporating employee involvement at every level.”

After two years in the Washington State House of Representatives and 20 in the State Senate (representing the 17th District), three years as director of Environmental Services for Clark County and, during the 2016 presidential campaign, a role as Donald Trump’s Washington state campaign manager, Benton moved to Washington, D.C., where he served briefly as senior White House advisor to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). In May 2017, he was appointed as 13th director of the Selective Service System.

Former Clark County resident Wadi Yakhour serves as the chief of staff for the Selective Service System. Yakhour is a Prairie High School graduate and a veteran of the US Navy.

“We may not be ranked number one, but such a significant improvement shows we’re heading in the right direction,’’ Yakhour said. “We are working hard and we are enjoying the climb.”

Federal law requires all male citizens, as well as male non-citizens residing in the U.S., to register with Selective Service within 30 days of their 18th birthday.  At 26, a man can no longer register – it’s too late. Those who fail to register become ineligible for federal student financial aid, job training, all federal employment and many municipal and private corporation jobs, and U.S. citizenship for male immigrants.

The Selective Service seeks volunteers to serve on Selective Service Local Boards throughout the country.  Interested citizen-volunteers can submit an application available from the Selective Service Web site at sss.gov.

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