Bolstering the Base

Bolstering the Base

The Army and General Dynamics collaborate to help sustain the Scranton Army Ammunition Plant against market and fiscal pressures. by Ms. Melissa Markos Much has changed since the 15-acre Scranton Army Ammunition Plant (SCAAP) opened in 1951 to manufacture large quantities of artillery and mortar shell bodies, ranging from 105 mm to 8 inches in caliber on high-capacity production lines. Increasing costs from government regulations for antiterrorism and security, environmental protection and emergency management, along with decreased demand for ammunition, have brought the financial viability of the Pennsylvania plant into question. But SCAAP, the youngest of the six government-owned, contractor-operated (GOCO) plants producing ammunition for the U.S. military, remains a […]

Then and Now – Carlucci Initatives

Then and Now – Carlucci Initatives

From the Carlucci initiatives of the 1980s to BBP 3.0 today, reform is a central theme of acquisition by Michael Bold Thirty-five years ago, defense acquisition reform dominated the cover of the July-August 1981 issue of Army Research, Development & Acquisition magazine, a predecessor of Army AL&T. “Decisions Made on 31 Recommendations to Reduce Costs … DOD to Improve Management Principles, Acquisition Process.” The cover featured the first page of an April 30, 1981, memo from Deputy Defense Secretary Frank C. Carlucci, and the article stated that Secretary of Defense Caspar W. Weinberger had made decisions on “31 recommendations and issues to reduce costs and improve the acquisition process throughout […]

What’s Your Problem?

What’s Your Problem?

Providing strong, clear direction in the face of ambiguity is vital to an acquisition program’s success. by Col. Luke Cropsey and Mr. Peter Burke There is an old adage about what the command “to secure the building” means to each military service. It goes like this: The Navy would turn out the lights and lock the doors. The Army would surround the building with defensive fortifications, tanks and concertina wire. The Marine Corps would assault the building, using overlapping fields of fire from all appropriate points on the perimeter. The Air Force would take out a three-year lease with an option to buy the building. Although this adage is, of […]

Top T&E Experts Collaborate at Workshop

Top T&E Experts Collaborate at Workshop

By Valerie Inge, DUSA-TE, and Joyce Junior, Army DACM The Test and Evaluation Managers Committee (TEMAC) hosted its annual leadership workshop at the U.S. Army Test and Evaluation Command’s (ATEC) Redstone Test Center at Redstone Arsenal, Alabama, July 12-14. The workshop brought together more than 50 Army senior acquisition T&E professionals to share ideas, learn best practices, and develop a cohesive plan across the Army acquisition enterprise. TEMAC Chair Larry Leiby led the workshop on behalf of the Army T&E Executive, David Jimenez. Per Army Regulation 73-1 (Army Test and Evaluation Policy), TEMAC is established and convened by the chair to accomplish specific T&E objectives and serves as a centralized […]

Reaching Way Back

Reaching Way Back

The 413th CSB works to strengthen teamwork between CCOs and attorneys—a relationship that’s becoming more important as the military’s operational focus shifts to the Pacific. by Capt. James S. Kim In tomorrow’s ever-shrinking world, U.S. forces will have a continually evolving mission to provide full spectrum military operations across the globe. It is in this dynamic atmosphere that contingency contracting officers (CCOs) find themselves with the unenviable task of juggling the dual missions of supporting garrison contract operations while always maintaining readiness to deploy to a forward area in support of expeditionary, contingency and training operations. In the unique and unpredictable atmosphere of deployed operations, continued and reliable reachback legal […]

The Untold Story behind the Historic Agreement to End Colombia’s 52-year Civil War

The Untold Story behind the Historic Agreement to End Colombia’s 52-year Civil War

Army AL&T News On Wednesday, the Colombian government and the country’s largest rebel group announced an agreement to end their 52-year civil war. What’s not making today’s headlines is the U.S. military assistance that was instrumental in bringing the rebels to the negotiating table. The agreement, announced in Havana, was the culmination of four years of negotiations between the government and the rebels of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC. The brutal war left some 220,000 dead and displaced more than 5 million people in a country of 50 million. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on Thursday hailed the accord, saying, “The United States strongly supports this […]

PEO C3T Develops Broad-Based Approach to Leverage Industry Innovation

PEO C3T Develops Broad-Based Approach to Leverage Industry Innovation

PEO C3T develops broad-based approach to leverage industry innovation By Bridget Lynch, PEO C3T Public Affairs ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, MD (August 19, 2016) – Rapidly changing technology in the marketplace and unpredictable conditions abroad make it imperative for the Army to quickly adopt the best solutions from industry. Despite the dominance of large, specific-use weapon systems within the Army, there is increasing recognition that niche solutions can have a big impact. As such, the Program Executive Office for Command, Control and Communications –Tactical (PEO C3T) has developed an approach to engage industry through various outreach venues. The Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) program is one part of that approach. This […]

Acquisition Reform Baked-In

Acquisition Reform Baked-In

Army PNT program uses open systems architecture, competitive prototyping to spur continuous innovation. by Mr. Kevin Coggins While acquisition reformers debate changes intended to put programs on the path to success earlier in their life cycle, one critical Army program is already living that goal. That would be the program management office for Positioning, Navigation and Timing (PM PNT), which reports directly to the Army acquisition executive. PM PNT is charged with delivering next-generation positioning and timing technologies and has embraced key elements of acquisition reform and Better Buying Power (BBP) 3.0. In partnership with industry and government organizations, the PNT program office is using open systems architecture and competitive […]

Reforming Motivation

Reforming Motivation

Army acquisition reform starts with inspiring the workforce. A deep dive into a handful of surveys sheds light on how to do that. by Mr. Nicholaus Saacks As dialogue intensifies around the best ways to reform the acquisition system, many proposals will offer new processes and realigned responsibilities to improve efficiency and effectiveness. However, no matter what changes may come, the Army acquisition system will continue to be reliant upon and driven by people. The system can only be successful through the performance, commitment and motivation of the acquisition workforce. With so much at stake, how can leaders be certain they are using the motivators that match the preferences of […]

Faces of the Force: Orlando “Fritz” Gordon

Faces of the Force: Orlando “Fritz” Gordon

Position and Unit: Deputy product director, Javelin Missile System, Close Combat Weapon Systems Project Office Years of Service: 23 DAWIA Certification: Level III in engineering Awards: AMRDEC Laboratory Demonstration Extraordinary Performance Pay Increases; Department of the Army Superior Civilian Service Award Education: M.S. in management and management of technology, University of Alabama in Huntsville; B.S. in electrical engineering, University of Alabama in Huntsville   The man behind the HELLFIRE Romeo By Mary Kate Aylward Fritz Gordon spent the early part of his career working with various missiles (PATRIOT, Terminal High Altitude Area Defense, Multiple Launch Rocket System, HELLFIRE). Then, with guidance from mentors, he transitioned into a program management role, […]