WASHINGTON, March 4, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Thomas Drake, a former senior executive at the National Security Agency who was charged under the Espionage Act after he blew the whistle on waste and fraud at the spy agency, will speak at a National Press Club luncheon on Friday, March 15, 2013.
The event is part of NPC's recognition of Sunshine Week, an initiative to underline the importance of open government and freedom of information.
While at NSA, Mr. Drake came to believe that the agency was both wasting billions of dollars and violating the privacy rights of the U.S. public by using a new intelligence gathering computer system called Trailblazer. Drake advocated that the agency instead adopt a less intrusive and less expensive program known as ThinThread. When the agency chose Trailblazer over ThinThread in 2000, Drake reported his concerns to the Inspector General and the House Intelligence Committee. He also gave information that he believed was not classified to a Baltimore Sun journalist.
His home was raided by the FBI and he was charged with four counts under the Espionage Act, three of which were eventually dropped.
The Press Club luncheon will begin promptly at 12:30 p.m. Remarks will begin at 1:00 p.m., followed by a question-and-answer session, ending at 2 p.m. Tickets may be purchase by going to the following link: http://www.press.org/events/npc-luncheon-thomas-drake-nsa-whistleblower. The cost of luncheon admission is $21 for National Press Club members and $35 non-members. Tickets must be purchased at time of reservation.
National Press Club Luncheons are webcast live on press.org. Follow the conversation on Twitter using the hashtag #NPCLunch, or on Facebook at (facebook.com/PressClubDC) and Twitter (@PressClubDC). Submit questions for speakers in advance and during the live event by sending them to @QNPCLunch on Twitter. Or email a question in advance, type DRAKE in the subject line and send to firstname.lastname@example.org before 10 a.m. on the day of event.
The Press Club is on the 13th floor, 529 14th Street, NW, Washington, D.C. Credentialed press may cover this event with ID.
About the National Press Club
The National Press Club is the world's leading professional organization for journalists with more than 3,300 members worldwide representing every major news organization. More than 250,000 people visit the Club each year to attend more than 2,000 events. The Club was founded in 1908 and is on the web at press.org.
SOURCE National Press Club