Deputy Director for Management at the Office of Management and Budget Jeffrey D. Zients in his office at the Eishenhower Executive Office Building on Thursday. (Bill O'Leary/WASHINGTON POST)

Zients, who grew up in the area and helped bring Major League Baseball back to the District, is the nation’s first chief performance officer and deputy director of management at the Office of Management and Budget. That means he’s the guy responsible for ensuring that federal agencies and departments are ready to shut down this weekend, if they must.

It’s been a rough few weeks packed with meetings and conference calls to instruct department secretaries and chiefs of staff how to cease operations. He’s also dealt with leaders of unions representing federal workers upset about the slow release of information about the fate of employees should the government close.

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