James Rankin

UNIT: U.S. Army Medical Command Health Care Acquisition Activity
POSITION: Chief of Staff/Deputy Principal Assistant for Contracting
AAC MEMBER SINCE: 2004
TOTAL YEARS OF ARMY SERVICE: 33
AWARDS: Program Executive Office for Enterprise Information Systems Officer of the Year; Defense Meritorious Service Medals (2); Meritorious Service Medal (3); Army Commendation Medals (3)
EDUCATION: M.S. in acquisition management, Florida Institute of Technology; B.S. in management, United States Military Academy


 

Rankin (center) meets with Brian Martin (left), director and principle assistant for contracting, Army Medical Research Acquisition Activity, and Lt. Col. Marc Bustamante, commander and principle assistant for contracting, Health Care Acquisition Activity.

Rankin, center, meets with Brian Martin, left, director and principle assistant for contracting, Army Medical Research Acquisition Activity, and Lt. Col. Marc Bustamante, commander and principle assistant for contracting, Health Care Acquisition Activity.

What do you do and why is it important to the warfighter?
I am proud to be part of the largest medical health care contracting activity in DOD. We procure approximately $1.8 billion of healthcare supplies and services for the military hospitals and clinics that provide vital medical services to 10 million service members, retirees and their family members. It is uplifting to know that what we do everyday has a potential impact on patients’ lives and the health and welfare of soldiers, their families and retirees.

What are some of the milestones you’ve achieved?
The biggest accomplishment during my military career has been the opportunity to serve contracting and program management and to achieve Level III certification in both. To see the acquisition life cycle from both ends of the spectrum has shaped my understanding of contracting and has been paramount to helping provide fast, cost-effective and adaptable solutions to the Army in any situation.

I also take great pride in being part of the team that put in place Army Direct Care Medical Services, the Army Medical Command’s strategic sourcing vehicle for doctors, nurses and clinical support personnel that we developed and put in place years before strategic sourcing and acquisitions efficiencies were the norm. I am most proud we did it as a $1.8 billion, 100 percent small business set-aside.

I was honored to be asked by DPAP to serve on three peer reviews for the TRICARE Pharmacy, Dental and Retiree Dental programs. The combined value of the programs exceeds $68 billion and they provide medical support services to approximately 10 million beneficiary service members, families and retirees. The peer review team worked hand in hand with the TRICARE contracting office to identify and correct various areas of concerns that led to each contract being awarded without a single successful protest.

While on active duty as an assistant program manager and part of the Defense Communications and Army Transmission Systems Program Office, I was part of the team that helped restore two of the direct communication link circuits between Washington, D.C., and the Russian Federation that were damaged in the collapse of the World Trade Center towers on 9/11. I also served on the team working to restore communications in the Pentagon after the attacks there. And I led a team to Kuwait to plan follow-on communications for Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom.

As a newly promoted major in 1999, I was selected to be the director of contracting for the Defense Information Systems Agency at Scott Air Force Base, Illinois. It was a great and humbling experience to lead an organization of 170 outstanding contracting professionals. We were responsible for $1.8 billion in long-haul communications and information technology contracts supporting the Army and other services. I look back on this leadership opportunity as the point where I realized I wanted to pursue a career in acquisition because of the caliber and dedication of the military and civilian workforce.

What is your greatest satisfaction in being part of the Army Acquisition Corps?
I have been blessed to work with some great and knowledgeable acquisition professionals, military [personnel] and civilians at all grade levels and career fields. I have learned that no one can do the job alone and that how well your team works together to meet the warfighter’s need is the true measure of your success. I am proud to be part of the Army’s Healthcare Acquisition Activity and the role we play in supporting the Army, the soldiers and their families through world-class medical contracting.

Rankin retired from active duty in 2007 at the rank of lieutenant colonel, capping more than 26 years of service. On hand to mark the occasion were his wife Lorraine, his daughters Kellie, back row, left, and Claire, and his sons Brian, back row, second from left, and Patrick.

Rankin retired from active duty in 2007 at the rank of lieutenant colonel, capping more than 26 years of service. On hand to mark the occasion were his wife Lorraine, his daughters Kellie, back row, left, and Claire, and his sons Brian, back row, second from left, and Patrick.

In celebration of the silver anniversary of the Army Acquisition Corps (AAC), Access is publishing “25 for 25” — twenty-five profiles of members of the AAC across the Army Acquisition Workforce. These profiles provide unique insight into the variety and importance of the work done by the AAC every day.