Vice President Gore Presents the 1000th Hammer Award

Washington, DC--Amid enthusiastic applause, Vice President Gore on December 17 presented the 1000th Hammer Award to a team of Postal workers from headquarters and Memphis and their private sector partner from Newton, Massachusetts, Targeted Marketing Solutions, Incorporated.

Every American benefits from the reinvented Postal Service. Today 92 percent of first class mail is delivered on time, up from 79 percent just three years ago. "Targeted Marketing's role symbolizes the cooperation we have enjoyed from the private sector on many Hammer teams," Vice President Gore said. "They have helped reinvent an important government service into a money-making proposition that not only saves $50 million in tax dollars, but also creates new jobs."

The Postal Service has not only improved mail delivery, the team came up with a "Movers Guide" and "Welcome Kit" that cuts the hassle for the approximately 20 percent of Americans who move every year.

Postmaster General Marvin Runyon and Brett Matthews, CEO of TMSI, accepted the award on behalf of the public-private sector reinvention team in the audience. Joining in the celebration were Massachusetts Senators Ted Kennedy and John Kerry and Congressman Barney Frank, plus senior management, employees and customers of the Postal Service and the Boston company--about 175 people in all.

The Hammer Award is the Vice President's answer to yesterday's government and its $400 hammer. It recognizes the significant contributions of teams of federal employees and their private sector partners who use such reinvention principles as putting customers first and cutting red tape. The award is a $6 hammer and a note from the Vice President in an aluminum frame, bedecked with a big red ribbon.

"When I presented the first Hammer Award four years ago," the Vice President said," I had a strong conviction that federal employees were ready, willing, and able to create a government that works better and costs less." One thousand Hammer Awards later, reinvention has cut the federal workforce by 331,000, eliminated 16,000 pages of obsolete regulations, and saved the taxpayers over $137 billion.

Hammer Awards are featured on the National Performance Review's web site at

Transcription of Remarks by Vice President Gore and Others at the Presentation of 1000th Hammer Award. For more information, contact Tom Flavin and Kelly Paisley at (202) 632-0150.

NPR Home Page Search the NPR Site NPR Initiatives Site Index Calendar Comments Awards Links Tools Frequently Asked Questions Speeches News Releases Library Navigation Bar For NPR site