GSA @ 65: Then and Now

“A brand new Federal agency – the General Services Administration – has started operations. It brings together the property and supply, building construction and management, records management and certain public works functions of the Government.”

– July 3, 1949 Press Release Announcing GSA’s Creation

With those two sentences, our agency began operations 65 years ago, and while the people and the technology have changed, and the mission statement may be a bit different, the goal is still the same - streamline the administrative work of the federal government.

Then and Now

Karel Yasko in office overflowing with paper
Employees use manual typewriters and work on wooden desks in enclosed offices.

Modern, collaborative workspace
Employees work on their phones, Total Workplace creates large, open workspaces, or they may be teleworking.

1960s cars running on natural gas
GSA tested cars running on natural gas…

Administrator Tangherlini and Interior Sec. Jewell in front of electric cars
Today we have electric and hybrid cars in the federal fleet.

1950s GSA bid process
This is how GSA managed invitations to bid on projects…

Screenshot of AAAP.gsa.gov
Now, it’s done electronically, cutting months off the process.
In 1970, the Nixon administration created the Consumer Product Information Coordinating Center.

USA.gov & GobiernoUSA logos
Now called the Federal Citizen Information Center, we deliver helpful information to the public through a variety of websites and social media.

Switchboard operators
This is what our phone system looked like.

mobile devices
Today we’re on VOIP softphones and can be connected anywhere via our mobile devices.

GSA Official Seal
Our official seal from 1949

GSA StarMark
And our “StarMark” logo today

 

Happy 65th Anniversary GSA! Has GSA played a part at your agency? Tell us on Twitter (@usgsa), using #GSA65.