Greg Woods, early e-gov advocate, dies

Funeral services for Greg Woods are Tuesday afternoon.

Greg Woods, former chief operating officer for the Education Department's Federal Student Aid Office, died last week. He was 59.

Woods resigned from his job Sept. 30 to undergo medical treatment for pancreatic cancer.

He had been with the Education Department since late 1998. Woods led the department's efforts to provide services to students online.

'Greg was truly dedicated to the mission of the department to provide access to postsecondary education for millions of students,' Education secretary Rod Paige said Friday in a statement. 'He was committed to his work and the challenge of streamlining and updating the technology systems that deliver financial aid to help make the goal of a college education a reality for so many.'

Before his Education post, Woods was deputy director for IT, customer service and regulatory reform for the White House's reinventing government program. He also was chief executive officer for eight years at Science and Engineering Associates Inc., a systems development start-up in Albuquerque, N.M.

Congress established Education's FSA as the government's first performance-based organization. The office's chief priority was to use IT to modernize delivery of financial aid and improve services to students.

'The sad truth is that public opinion doesn't trust government to do the right thing,' Woods said at his December, 1998 swearing-in ceremony. 'We are gonna show 'em service like they've never seen, and we'll have fun doing it.'

Visitation will be from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. today at Demaine Funeral Home, 520 Washington St., Alexandria, Va. The funeral will be held at 1:30 p.m. on Nov. 26 at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Alexandria.

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