USD(AT&L) accepting nominations for the 2016 awards program

USD(AT&L) accepting nominations for the 2016 awards program

By Ashley Tolbert FORT BELVOIR, Va.—Nominations for the Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics Awards Program are now being accepted, with the nomination period scheduled to close May 31. The awards, considered among the most prestigious given to the acquisition community, recognize the unique and significant contributions of the defense acquisition workforce, in line with the Better Buying Power (BBP) objective of improving the professionalism of the total acquisition workforce. “In the end, it is the quality of our people that matters the most, more so than any policy or regulation anyone can put in place,” Hon. Frank Kendall, undersecretary of defense for acquisition, technology and logistics (USD(AT&L)), […]

Hallock hosts senior leader contracting workshop

Hallock hosts senior leader contracting workshop

By Amanda Jordan KANSAS CITY, Missouri – More than 45 senior leaders and others from across the Army contracting enterprise gathered April 19-21 to attend the Principal Assistant Responsible for Contracting (PARC) Leadership Workshop hosted by Harry P. Hallock, deputy assistant secretary of the Army for procurement (DASA(P)). The workshop gave Army PARCs the chance to meet with the DASA(P) to address enterprise-wide issues and tackle challenges facing Army contracting. The three-day event also afforded unlimited opportunities for collaboration and training, including an informative dialogue with Claire Grady, director of Defense Procurement and Acquisition Policy in the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics. Other […]

OCSJX-16 marks several ‘firsts’

OCSJX-16 marks several ‘firsts’

by Daniel P. Elkins, Operational Contract Support 2016 Public Affairs Cell More than 500 participants from across DOD recently spent three weeks running through the ins and outs of joint contracting and operational contract support readiness, as part of the Operational Contract Support Joint Exercise 2016 (OCSJX-16) held in El Paso, Texas. Sponsored by the Director for Logistics, Joint Staff J-4, OCSJX exercises the full spectrum of contract support from operational through tactical levels. This year, OCSJX-16 used the U.S. Southern Command Panama Canal defense scenario to support training and assessment of operational contract support capabilities. The exercise integrated planning and key processes for OCS, and included a focus on […]

Faces of the Force: Kay Hyska

Faces of the Force: Kay Hyska

Faces of the Force: Kay Hyska Position and unit: Contracting officer and division chief, Aviation Field Maintenance Division, Aviation Maintenance Directorate, Army Contracting Command – Redstone Arsenal, Alabama Years of Service in Workforce: 20 DAWIA Certifications: Level III in contracting Education: MBA, University of Phoenix; M.S. in acquisition and management, Florida Institute of Technology; B.A. in general education, Columbia College Awards: Army Contracting Command Team of the Quarter; Contracting Command Commander’s Award for Civil Service   Kay Hyska’s ‘long ride’ By Susan L. Follett In her 20 years of working in Army contracting, Kay Hyska has committed more than $5 billion of the government’s money. And in doing so, she […]

Army AL&T magazine leads fourth annual writers workshop and ALTies awards ceremony

Army AL&T magazine leads fourth annual writers workshop and ALTies awards ceremony

By Ashley Tolbert FORT BELVOIR, Va.—The Army AL&T magazine editorial team held its fourth annual writers workshop May 11 here including interactive forums and guest speakers—all focused on helping magazine contributors develop and share impactful articles, photos, ads and graphics. Afterward, the award-winning magazine announced the winners of its annual “ALTies” awards, celebrating the best article, commentary, graphic, ad and photograph published in the magazine in 2015. The awards were presented by Editor-in-Chief Nelson McCouch III. “In a way, we’re like PBS,” McCouch said. “The magazine is made possible by contributions from supporters like you. Without you, I’d have a staff of writers, but not the access to the content […]

ASA(ALT) launches third annual Maj. Gen. Harold J. “Harry” Greene Awards for Acquisition Writing competition

ASA(ALT) launches third annual Maj. Gen. Harold J. “Harry” Greene Awards for Acquisition Writing competition

By Karen D. Kurtz WASHINGTON (May 16, 2016) – The Principal Military Deputy to the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics and Technology (ASA(ALT)), Lt. Gen. Michael E. Williamson, announced the third annual Maj. Gen. Harold J. “Harry” Greene Awards for Acquisition Writing competition today to encourage critical writing focused on Army acquisition issues. “This annual writing competition is designed to identify, discuss, and influence the outcome of significant issues affecting Army acquisition in today’s increasingly uncertain and complex global security environment,” said Williamson. “Through critical thinking and writing about pertinent subjects related to Army acquisition, we will continually improve the process to deliver capabilities to our Warfighters […]

Cost Savings From The Bottom Up

Cost Savings From The Bottom Up

A technique called ‘clean-sheeting’ lets project managers work from the ground up to hunt for cost savings when dealing with a sole-sourced product with proprietary technical data. by Maj. Kenneth B. Fowler and Mr. Robert E. Steere III How do you know you’re paying what you should be paying for a state-of-the-art, first-of-its-kind product, particularly if it’s being produced in a sole-source environment from a proprietary technical data package? The Product Manager for Guided Precision Munitions and Mortar Systems (GPM2S) faced this question regarding the M1156 Precision Guidance Kit (PGK). Although the product manager employed traditional cost-estimating techniques to develop and update the program office estimate, whether the government was […]

Army Executive Visits 401st AFSB

Army Executive Visits 401st AFSB

by Justin Graff, 401st AFSB Public Affairs CAMP ARIFJAN, Kuwait — The acting Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics and Technology visited the 401st Army Field Support Brigade here, May 3, to get a firsthand look at how the brigade provides logistic support throughout the U.S. Army Central Command footprint. Katrina McFarland, acting assistant secretary of the Army (AL&T), toured equipment warehouses and spoke with 401st Army Field Support Brigade Commander, Col. Chris Day about logistic challenges and innovations in supporting such a large area of operation. “There’s so much going on in theater. The environment is very complex,” McFarland said. “They have to show so much adaptability […]

Army designing next-gen command posts

Army designing next-gen command posts

by Claire Heininger, PEO C3T ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. (May 12, 2016) — What should a command post look like? Ask three different commanders and you’re likely to get three different answers — even if they’re in the same unit. That’s one challenge the Army is facing as it works to deliver the next generation of command post equipment to support a more agile, expeditionary force. While the right technologies now exist — from wireless tactical networks to intelligent power systems to mission command apps — how they fit together will vary by formation, echelon and phase of operation. “It’s important not to decide what the physical form of something […]

Co-development effort leads to state-of-the-art UH-60M training simulator

Co-development effort leads to state-of-the-art UH-60M training simulator

by Brian Beall Army aviators seeking flight training on the UH-60M Black Hawk have a new, state-of-the-art option at their disposal, thanks to a joint effort of the U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Research, Development and Engineering Center (AMRDEC) and the Program Executive Office for Aviation at Redstone Arsenal, Alabama. The Black Hawk Aircrew Trainer (BAT) provides Army UH-60M aviators with a high-fidelity, fully immersive flight training experience. It’s currently in operation at Fort Bliss, Texas, and Des Moines, Iowa. Up to 17 other locations might receive the BAT simulator, as well. AMRDEC is home to the Systems Simulation, Software and Integration (S3I) Directorate, which provides the Army and DOD […]