• Carter Presents Awards for Excellence in Acquisition

    Deputy Defense Secretary Ash Carter, left, presents the David Packard Excellence in Aquisition Award in a ceremony at the Pentagon, Nov. 25, 2013. Four acquisition teams received the award, the highest Defense Department-bestowed honor for acquisitions. (DOD photo by Erin A. Kirk-Cuomo)

    By Claudette Roulo, American Forces Press Service


    WASHINGTON, Nov. 25, 2013 – Deputy Defense Secretary Ash Carter today presented four acquisition teams with the David Packard Excellence in Acquisition Award, the highest Defense Department-bestowed honor for acquisitions.

    “I can think of no better way to spend one of my last days as deputy secretary of defense than by acknowledging these men and women who have worked so hard to make our department succeed,” Carter said.

    The David Packard Excellence in Acquisition Award was first awarded in 1997 in honor of the late David Packard, a former deputy secretary of defense and advocate of excellence in defense acquisition practices. The award recognizes organizations, groups and teams that have demonstrated superior program management, exemplary innovation and accomplishment in the successful execution of the department’s Better Buying Power initiatives.

    Acknowledging recent challenges faced by DOD’s civilian workforce, including furloughs and the government shutdown, the deputy secretary said that the work of acquisitions professionals is vital to the success of the department.

    “You stuck with us, despite all these recent challenges,” Carter said.

    “I know why you do it,” he continued. “You do it because you get to wake up every morning and be part of something bigger than yourselves.”

    In these challenging times, it’s particularly important to honor outstanding public servants, Carter said.

    “The impact that they can make — all of them — [is] represented today by our distinguished honorees,” he said.

    The honorees include:

    – The Joint Light Tactical Vehicle team, a joint Army and Marine Corps team, for its cost-saving efforts in restoring the mobility, payload-carrying capacity, rotary-wing transportability and overall safety of Army and Marine Corps light tactical vehicles;

    – The Navy’s Air and Missile Defense Radar team for its cost saving and risk reduction initiatives in the pre-engineering, manufacturing and development phase of this major defense acquisition program;

    – The Air Force’s HC-130J Combat King II and MC-130J Commando II Program team for its innovative recapitalization program to procure 131 aircraft for Air Combat Command and Air Force Special Operations Command, and

    Defense Information Technology Contracting Organization and Air Force National Capital Region Information Technology Team, a joint Defense Information Systems Agency and Air Force team, for its cost-saving ability to quickly respond to real-world needs for scalable information technology services and help desk support.

    “All four of these teams have made a huge difference to the department,” Carter said.

    “The accomplishments of our recipients today showcase precision, business acumen, innovation, dedication and teamwork at every stage of the acquisition process,” he said.

    The honorees’ cumulative efforts “have saved the department billions of dollars,” the deputy secretary said. “Being responsible stewards of taxpayer money is always a top priority for us but it’s particularly appreciated during these times of shrinking budgets and fiscal uncertainty.

    “You have proven that we do not have to sacrifice performance and capabilities in order to achieve speed and savings,” Carter added. “Your successes show that we can have effective oversight, but above all, better value for the taxpayer and the warfighter.”

    (Follow Claudette Roulo on Twitter: @RouloAFPS)

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  • Joint Light Tactical Vehicle team wins Packard Award for acquisition excellence

    Full-pace, full-scope testing of the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle prototypes began Sept. 3 and will last for 14 months. Photo by U.S. Army

    By Michael Clow


    WARREN, Mich. — Marking another sign of strength for the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle program, joint program office leaders celebrated being named one of the four 2013 recipients of the Department of Defense (DOD) David Packard Award in Acquisition Excellence.

    The Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV) program, an Army-led effort partnered with the U.S. Marine Corps, is working to close a capability gap in existing light tactical vehicle fleets and give commanders a flexible, transportable, protected, networked, and reliable expeditionary vehicle capability.

    “I couldn’t be prouder of our teams and their tremendous efforts to keep JLTV on budget, on schedule, and with stable requirements despite tremendous uncertainty.”

    “The days of front lines and rear areas are gone,” said JLTV Project Manager Col. John R. Cavedo, U.S. Army. “Our objective is to eliminate the tradeoffs commanders have to make today between Mine Resistant Ambush Protected Vehicles and the High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle, and to give them a flexible, expeditionary, and networked vehicle able to handle tomorrow’s diverse challenges.”

    The David Packard Excellence in Acquisition Award recognizes DOD civilian and/or military organizations, groups, or teams, whose significant contributions demonstrate exemplary innovation and best acquisition practices. The award recognizes achievements that exemplify the goals and objectives established for furthering life cycle cost reduction and acquisition excellence in DOD.

    “I couldn’t be prouder of our teams and their tremendous efforts to keep JLTV on budget, on schedule, and with stable requirements despite tremendous uncertainty. That speaks volumes about this team’s dedication and character,” said Mr. William Taylor, U.S. Marine Corps program executive officer for land systems.

    Commitment to the program, which has been identified with the defense strategic guidance, runs deep.

    “I’m fully committed to JLTV, and it’s absolutely what our Soldiers need. The JLTV program is tremendously well structured, affordable, and-most importantly-effectively addresses the warfighter’s real needs. My most sincere congratulations to the team for their great work thus far,” said Lt. Gen. William Phillips, principal military deputy to the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics, and Technology.

    “This award is a tremendous honor and recognition of the great teamwork between the Army and Marine Corps on this program,” said Kevin Fahey, the Army’s program executive officer for combat support & combat service support. “A collaborative, joint approach is essential to how we fight, and so it’s equally important to how we acquire interoperable future systems.”

    The JLTV program is currently in the testing portion of its 33-month engineering and manufacturing development phase, leading to an acquisition milestone and low rate initial production decisions in fiscal year 2015. The program has already been cited as a leader in implementing DOD’s Better Buying Power practices, and its innovative efforts substantially reduced costs, emphasized the benefits of competition in all phases, and shortened the acquisition timeline.

    Intended to replace a portion of the Army’s light tactical wheeled vehicle fleet and Marine Corps vehicles with the most demanding mission profiles, over the next three decades, the Army and Marine Corps expect to acquire a total of about 55,000 new vehicles.

    Members of the joint program office will accept the award at an upcoming Pentagon ceremony.

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