Protocol Officer #345

Washington D.C.
Nov 18, 2021
Dec 23, 2021
Full Time

The U.S. Senate Sergeant at Arms has a unique opportunity to leverage your knowledge and experience in protocol, diplomacy, planning, and organizing in the role of Protocol Officer. This position requires you to lead and facilitate visits by Heads of State, diplomats, senior government officials, and other VIPs to the United States Senate. The position requires the exercise of initiative, discretion, and independent judgment. Knowledge of proper protocol procedures, tact, diplomacy and problem-solving skills are required. Work includes planning and coordinating logistics for special events such as state funerals and Presidential Inaugurations. The Protocol Officer also serves as the SAA spokesperson for media inquiries.

LICENSES AND CERTIFICATIONS: Must possess or be able to obtain a security clearance.

SALARY RANGE: $97,970 - $146,953




The U.S. Senate Sergeant at Arms has a unique opportunity to leverage your knowledge and experience in protocol,diplomacy,planning,andorganizingintheroleofProtocolOfficer. Thispositionrequiresyouto lead and facilitate visits by Heads of State, diplomats, senior government officials, and other VIPs to the United States Senate. In this role you will also lead the organization’s planning efforts in support of Presidential Inaugurations, commemorative, and memorial events in the U.S. Capitol; and serve as the public information officer for the U.S. Senate Sergeant at Arms. In this role, you will take the lead in organizing and planning VIP visits to the U.S. Capitol. You will handle sensitive information with tact and diplomacy. The position requires the exercise of initiative, discretion, and independent judgment. Knowledge of proper protocol procedures, tact, diplomacy and problem-solving skills are required. Work includes planning and coordinating logistics for special events such as state funerals and Presidential Inaugurations. The Protocol Officer also serves as the SAA spokesperson for media inquiries. Work is performed under the general direction of the Deputy Sergeant at Arms.


(This list is not absolute or restrictive, but indicates approximate duties and responsibilities which may be redefined pursuant to operational needs.)

  • Serves as the Protocol Officer to the Senate Sergeant at Arms.

  • Serves as a liaison to all Senators seeking protocol guidance.

  • Participates in the planning of all official special events to ensure proper protocol procedures are followed, proper security arrangements are made, schedules of those involved are coordinated and media access is arranged.

  • Facilitates official visits by Foreign Heads of State and their delegations to the Senate; coordinates necessary travel, detailed schedule of events, and security arrangements; greets, escorts, and introduces Heads of State to Senators. Conducts all pre-visit walk throughs with advance teams.

  • Plans and oversees the travel arrangements of official Senate delegations to Senate funerals, conferences, conventions, and other large gatherings; includes daily schedule, security arrangements, and logistical support for Senators.

  • Serves as Inaugural Coordinator for the Senate Sergeant at Arms and leads the SAA planning efforts that begin approximately two years prior to a Presidential Inauguration.

  • Serves as Sergeant at Arms spokesperson for media inquiries.

  • Controls access for film and photography in the Senate wing of the Capitol and on the Senate grounds; authorizes or denies requests for access.

  • Serves as the Senate representative for Rotunda events; coordinates logistics with the Speaker’s office, House Sergeant at Arms office, Senate offices, U.S. Capitol Police and the Architect of the Capitol; reviews programs; and ensures proper protocol procedures are followed


Work is performed in an office environment and is essentially sedentary with occasional walking , and safely carrying items under 25 pounds.; may require long periods of standing. This position requires in-person presence at events, planning meetings, briefings, but also allows for some scheduled remote work.


  • Work requires a Bachelor’s Degree and five to seven years of responsible professional experience; or any combination of education and experience that demonstrates the following knowledge, skills, and abilities:
  • Ability to lead the planning, arrangement and execution of detailed programs for visiting dignitaries including the President of the United States, the Vice President of the United States, Heads of State, Ambassadors and United States Cabinet officials.
  • Ability to lead the planning, arrangement and execution of State funerals and commemorative ceremonies.
  • Effectively provide protocol guidance and or wayfinding direction to Government officials, Senators, Senators’ spouses, Heads of State, Cabinet Officials, executives, Congressional, White House and the Diplomatic Corps, Embassy and partnering organizations’ staff, which is key in this forward- facing position.
  • Extensive knowledge of, or ability to learn, the Senate, Senate Rules, and the ability to explain and apply Senate Regulations and procedures as they relate to visiting dignitaries.
  • Extensive knowledge of protocol procedures, and the ability to explain proper etiquette and customs. • Ability to communicate effectively, both orally and in writing.
  • Ability to train, assign and review work of co-workers and subordinates.
  • Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with coworkers within the SAA, as well as with staff of other partner organizations such as congressional offices, embassies, the White House, and the U.S. Capitol Police and U.S. Secret Service.
  • As the public information officer for the SAA, responsibilities include organizing data and facts, generating and distributing statements for the Record, press releases, managing questions and drafting responses for the SAA and DSAA, and working closely with the Senate Media Galleries on issues as varied as attendance at press conferences to photographer locations during VIP visits.
  • The statements contained herein reflect general details necessary to describe the principal functions of this class, knowledge and skill typically required and the physical demands and working conditions, but should not be considered an all-inclusive listing of work requirements.



Work with other Legislative Branch and Executive Branch stakeholders to ensure Senate equities and prerogatives are maintained.


Must possess or be able to obtain a security clearance.



The United States Senate Sergeant at Arms

(SAA) is the largest in size of staff and budget in the

Senate. It is responsible for all Senate computers and technology support services, recording and

photographic services, printing and graphics services, and telecommunications services. The SAA

also provides assistance to all Senate offices with their staffing, mailing, purchasing, and financial

needs. The offices of the SAA that are responsible for providing these and other services include

Capitol Facilities, the Operations Division, Financial Operations, and Human Resources. The SAA

also shares responsibility for the Senate Page Program, the Senate Office of Training and

Development, and the Capitol Telephone Exchange.

This summary of Employment Policies and Benefits is not comprehensive; it highlights major benefits that may be of interest to prospective employees. Policies and benefits are subject to change at the discretion of the Sergeant at Arms.


All jobs at the Senate are considered “excepted service” and are accordingly not part of the federal government’s "competitive service” process. SAA employees are considered at-will employees under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Senate Sergeant at Arms. Prospective employees will be fingerprinted and undergo a criminal background investigation. All employment offers are contingent upon successful completion of the background check.

Evaluations: Employees enter service under a six-month probationary period. After six-months of employment, a performance appraisal is conducted to determine if the employee meets job requirements, or to remain in the employment of the SAA. On the first anniversary of completing probation, and annually thereafter on that anniversary date, performance appraisals are conducted.

Pay: Salary reviews occur at the same time as performance appraisals. Merit increases are not automatic; they are based on meritorious performance and subject to approval by management of the department and the SAA. If approved by the Senate, SAA employees may also receive cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs). Senate pay days are the 5th and 20th of each month. If these days fall on a weekend or holiday, the last working day before the 5th and the 20th becomes the pay day.


The Sergeant at Arms offers the full range of Federal benefits to employees: •Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB)
•Federal Employees Dental and Vision Program (FEDVIP)
•Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA)

•Federal Long-Term Care Insurance (FLTCIP) •Federal Employees Group Life Insurance (FEGLI)


Most new employees are automatically covered under the Federal Employees Retirement System - Further Revised Annuity Employees (FERSFRAE). Employees with prior Federal service may be eligible to continue to participate in the Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS), Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS) or the Federal Employees Retirement System – Revised Annuity Employees (FERS-RAE). For information on the TSP, visit


We offer paid time off benefits including: Annual, Sick, Long-Term Medical leave, and ten holidays. Annual and Sick leave are accrued on the 15th and last day of the month. Annual leave is accrued at rates dependent upon length of Federal Service.

Holidays: New Year’s Day, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, Presidents Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Columbus Day, Veterans Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day.

Full -Time Employee Annual Leave Accrual Rates:

Less than 3 years of federal service – 120 hours/year, 5 hours/pay day • 3 - 15 years of federal service – 160 hours/year, 6.67 hours/pay day
15+ years of federal service – 200 hours/year, 8.33 hours/pay day

Year-end balances of no more than 240 hours carry over for future use

Full -Time Employee Sick Leave Accrual Rate:

Sick leave can be used for either personal or immediate family medical needs •96 hours/year, 4 hours/pay period

Year-end balances carry over for future use


Transportation Subsidy: The SAA offers a Transit subsidy of up to $270.00 for employees who use mass transit, including Metro, Commuter Buses, VRE, MARC trains and Van Pools.

Parking: Parking is provided without cost to regular SAA employees who do not participate in the transit subsidy program.

Student Loan Repayment Program: The SAA offers Student Loan Repayment for employees of up to $833.00 a month for Qualifying Federal Student Loans.

Training & Development: The SAA offers training and development to advance professional skills including live classes, online learning and leadership coaching.

The SAA is an equal opportunity employer in accordance with the requirements of Senate rules, regulations, and applicable Federal Laws.


Hiring for this position is governed by the Veterans Employment Opportunity Act of 1998 (“VEOA”), as made applicable by the Congressional Accountability Act of 1995 (“CAA”). Pursuant to the VEOA, qualified applicants who are not current employees of the Office of the Senate Sergeant at Arms and who are disabled or who have served on active duty in the Armed Forces during certain specified time periods or in certain military designated campaigns (“veterans”) may be eligible to receive a preference over non-veterans in hiring decisions. Family members of veterans may also be eligible to receive a veterans’ preference if the veteran cannot claim his or her veterans’ preference.

To be eligible for a veterans’ preference, applicants must meet all of the requirements set forth in the VEOA and applicable regulations. Those eligibility requirements are summarized in the Application for Veterans’ Preference, which is available at

If claiming a veterans’ preference, an applicant must indicate that he/she is preference eligible on the application or resume and must submit a completed copy of the Application for Veterans’ Preference along with the supporting documentation specified on that form. If the Office of the Senate Sergeant at Arms does not receive the Application for Veterans’ Preference and supporting documentation by the closing date, the applicant’s claim for a veterans’ preference may be denied.

Applicants may obtain a copy of the Office’s Veterans’ Preference In Appointments policy by submitting a written request to

Individuals who are entitled to a veterans’ preference are invited to self-identify voluntarily. This information is intended solely for use in connection with the obligations and efforts of the Office of the Senate Sergeant at Arms to provide veterans’ preference to preference-eligible applicants in accordance with the VEOA. An applicant’s status as a disabled veteran and any information regarding an applicant’s disability, including the applicant’s medical condition and history, will be kept confidential and will be collected, maintained and used in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, as made applicable by section 102(a)(3) of the CAA, 2 U.S.C. §1302(a)(3). An applicant who declines to self-identify as a disabled veteran and/or to provide information and documentation regarding his/her disabled veteran’s status will not be subjected to an adverse employment action, but the individual may be ruled ineligible for a veterans’ preference.



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