IRS employee saved millions targeting tax fraudsters

Wednesday - 7/25/2012, 9:57am EDT

Shauna Henline, senior technical coordinator, Frivolous Return Program, IRS

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As your agency's budget tightens, the agency that brings in most of the money the government spends is stepping up its efforts to bring tax evaders to justice.

Shauna Henline, who works as a senior technical coordinator with the Frivolous Return Program at the IRS, has cracked down on people who attempt to evade paying taxes using often bizarre claims as well as the promoters of such schemes.

Since she became involved with the program in 2001, Henline has been directly or indirectly responsible for more than $318 million in penalties against individuals filing frivolous claims.

Henline is a finalist for a 2012 Service to America (or Sammies) Medal.


Federal News Radio asked the Sammies finalists to tell us a bit about themselves.

What three words best describe your leadership philosophy?

Don't fear accountability.

What's the best piece of advice (or words of wisdom) you've ever received and who gave it to you?

When a person tells you who they are, believe them the first time. (This is more on the personal side than the business side, but I love it.) Maya Angelou said it.

Who is your biggest role model and why?

There are many I admire, but Mark Howard, IRS-Office of Chief Counsel in the Salt Lake City Area Counsel, is probably the biggest. He exemplifies everything I admire about employees of the IRS. He is prompt in taking action, he is decisive, he is not afraid to hold an opinion that is counter to the popular one or the most politically correct one and has the proper factual support to back up the opinion. He is also not afraid to reconsider that opinion.

What's the biggest challenge you've had to overcome (personally or professionally) and how did you overcome it?

Being willing to move away from my "comfort zone." I constantly work on overcoming it by forcing myself to venture into new jobs, new positions, new issues, etc.

What's the last thing you read and what's next on your reading list?

The Hunger Games Trilogy. I just started to read Innocent by Scott Turow.

Meet the rest of the 2012 Sammies finalists.