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2006 Acquisition Transformation and Leadership Awards

WASHINGTON -- The 2006 Air Force level acquisition awards were presented on 28 Feb 2007 at the Acquisition Leaders Forum held in Atlanta, Georgia. As the forum's host, Ms. Sue C. Payton, the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force (Acquisition) presided and was joined by General Bruce Carlson the Commander, Air Force Materiel Command. Together they recognized the most outstanding individuals and teams from across the Air Force.

These awards recognize skill in acquisition program management--delivering capability to the warfighter--and leadership bringing about acquisition process transformation. The following individuals and teams were recognized for their exceptional contributions to Air Force Acquisition:

The presentations began with the Agile Acquisition Transformation Leadership Award. This award is presented to an individual and to a team. The individual winner was Major Kenneth H. Butler.

Major Butler served as Flight Chief for Global Hawk Radar and Advanced Technology, supervising the $1.1B development contract to build and deliver three airborne radars for use during development and operational flight tests. Demonstrating agile acquisition, his flight led the on-cost and on-schedule development effort delivering the first ever Multi-Platform Radar Technology Insertion Program radar to the System Integration Lab. He focused his team's efforts on the upcoming flight tests, installing the Multi-Platform Radar Technology Insertion Program pod on the Proteus testbed three months ahead of the baseline schedule objective. He spearheaded a major schedule review, highlighting 452 critical path events, and then filled a critical program hole by finding and integrating GPS and DataLink solutions for the testbed aircraft. He instituted resource-sharing initiatives for government and contractor test personnel that are estimated to have saved $450K during flight tests.

The Outstanding Air Force Project Manager Award was presented to the outstanding military project manager and an outstanding civilian project manager at the company grade level. The military winner was Captain Jessica R. Chapman.

Capt Chapman's leadership overcame seemingly insurmountable fiscal, political and organization constraints, resulting in the successful launch of the Ground Situational Awareness Toolkit program in response to a 759th Expeditionary Mission Support Group Urgent Need. She overcame significant Office of the Secretary of Defense resistance to the CSAF-approved strategy, convincing OSD with her expert analysis of program acquisition and sustainment options. Her tenacious management of the $3.2M Warfighter Rapid Acquisition Program, through challenging twists and turns, demonstrated her skill and customer focus and is poised to deliver the Air Force's first-ever Small Unmanned Aircraft System for base force protection.

The civilian winner was Ms. Kristen M. Maconi.

Ms. Maconi distinguished herself as Production Manager for the Joint Direct Attack Munitions (JDAM). She developed a JDAM beddown plan, delivering over twenty-six thousand of the most used joint precision strike weapon in Operations IRAQI FREEDOM and ENDURING FREEDOM in 2006-used in over eight hundred combat drops. She planned and directed hardware repairs necessary to avert certain weapon failure in over eleven thousand JDAMs. She managed 14 worldwide recall and retrofit actions with minimum impact to field units. Ms. Maconi was key in the award of the $240M JDAM Lot 10 buy, resulting in the delivery of ten thousand tail kits to warfighters within eleven days of funds receipt.

The Outstanding Air Force Acquisition Staff Officer Award is presented to a military member or a civilian assigned to a Major Command, the Air Staff, or the Secretariat. This year's military winner was Capt Maurice H. Moore.

As Air Mobility Command's Chief for C-21 and UH-1N Requirements, and later, as Chief, Mission Support Planning, Capt Moore brought acquisition expertise to the requirements generation process, improving weapon system management and readiness for the Mobility Air Forces. He deftly orchestrated both the Mobility Air Force's C-21 Crew and Supportability Operations Review Teams, obtaining grassroots requirements and prioritized rankings of critically-needed warfighting capabilities. Capt Moore was instrumental in ensuring Air Mobility Command requirements were properly vetted and subsequently incorporated into Air Force Space Command's Common Vertical Lift Support Platform Analysis of Alternatives. His leadership was also invaluable in revitalizing International Affairs functions with the command. His work was also essential in planning and conducting an AF Board visit and the annual Capabilities Program Executive Review at HQ AMC.

The next two presentations were for the Outstanding Air Force Program Managers in 2005. These awards are presented to a military program manager and a civilian program manager at the field grade level. The civilian winner was Mr. Michael W. Campbell.

Mr. Campbell inherited two broken programs and turned them around to deliver lethal effects in support of the Global War on Terrorism. He led the 679th Armament Systems Squadron's DSU-33 Height-of-Burst Sensor program, valued at $330M. He was integral to fielding twenty thousand sensors, resulting in a thirty percent increase in the soft target effect of associated bombs. He led a twenty-member team in the $41M competitive source selection of a manufacturer of the height-of-burst radar proximity sensor, resulting in the selection authority accepting his recommendation without exception. His management of the Joint Programmable Fuze program was responsible for fielding three thousand Joint Programmable Fuzes, doubling warfighter options through cockpit reprogramming of bomb fuzes. Finally, he spearheaded a Navy operational lift of thirty-eight hundred classified sensors to Pacific Air Forces, avoiding $200K in airlift expenses and a six-month delay.

The winning military Outstanding Air Force Program Manager was Lt Col Russell D. Fellers.

Lt Col Fellers led the 635th Electronic Systems Squadron to accelerate new Airborne Warning and Control System (AWACS) capability into the hands of the warfighter, delivering under cost and using the savings to deliver even more capability. He advanced the full operational capability date for a Joint Chiefs of Staff mandated upgrade by one year and saved over $5M, keeping the E-3 test aircraft operational. He delivered a tactical datalink upgrade six weeks early, slashing fratricide risk by twenty-five percent. Col Fellers led the first AWACS Public-Private Partnership and was first to leverage a $600M modification facility saving Air Combat Command $17M in production costs. He collaborated with multiple nations to save over $65M in development costs for over $750M of E-3 AWACS requirements.

The awards for the Outstanding System Program Director are presented to a military and civilian program director at the Group or Wing level. The civilian Outstanding System Program Director is Ms. Lynda T. Rutledge.

During this period, Ms. Rutledge led the 708th Armament Systems Group to deliver engagement-ending air-to-ground weapons for warfighters in the Global War on Terrorism. Her leadership spanned four munitions acquisition programs and 22 foreign military sales cases with a combined budget of over $1B, responsible for fielding over 51 thousand bombs, sensors, and fuzes. She led the delivery of the Joint Direct Attack Munitions, the most used joint precision strike weapons in Operations IRAQI FREEDOM and ENDURING FREEDOM-over eight hundred combat drops. Additionally, her teams fielded 20 thousand DSU-33 Height-of-Bursts Sensors, and 3000 Joint Programmable Fuzes, resulting in a 30% increase in the soft target effect of associated bombs and doubling warfighter options through cockpit reprogramming of bomb fuzes. She orchestrated the revival of the $110M "Bunker Buster" weapon program to develop the next generation weapons against hard and deeply buried targets. She oversaw the sale of munitions to 22 allies and coalition partners, strengthening strategic partnerships in the international community's struggle against terrorism worldwide.

The military Outstanding System Program Director was Colonel Robert K. Hoffman.

Col Hoffman executed more than $2.4B over 1,200 contract actions and led the Aeronautical Systems Center's only flying unit, spread across six geographically separated locations. His Network Centric Collaborative Targeting team demonstrated a revolutionary networking capability that focused high demand, low-density sensors on time-critical targets and earned a flawless Military Unit Assessment from Central Command. He managed an $81.4M effort to design, modify and field six combat-ready U-28A multi-integrated aircraft in just nine months. Col Hoffman turned concept into capability for the Scathe View C-130 platform by delivering a $5.2M satellite communications reach-back effort which provides worldwide video dissemination via the existing Predator architecture and increases the data rate by 31 times. His RC-135 team delivered a wideband satellite communications system that gets key decision-quality information into global intelligence networks. His EC-130H team developed and fielded a capability to defeat roadside bombs that is now saving troops' lives daily.

The Outstanding Air Force System Program Office Award recognizes a materiel wing or group for outstanding mission accomplishment by satisfying customer needs and delivering capability to the warfighter through innovation and process improvement, collaboration with the user, and effective, innovative resource management. The Outstanding Air Force System Program Office award was presented to the Joint Strike Fighter Program Office, Arlington, VA.

The Joint Strike Fighter Program Office is a selectively manned, SECDEF-directed multi-national joint program office leading all acquisition and ownership aspects of the $200B+ F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program including design, production and deployment of the JSF F-35 family of aircraft, F135 and F136 engines and associated support and training systems. In partnership with industry, program participants include USAF, USN, USMC, Royal Navy, Royal Air Force, Italy, Australia, Canada, Denmark, Netherlands, Norway, Turkey and countries participating in Foreign Military Sales. Tremendous determination, focus, and teamwork enabled the Joint Strike Fighter Program Office to accomplish miracles from 1 January to 31 December 2006. The team experienced extraordinary success during this phase of the $40B System Development and Demonstration. Tireless attention to detail enabled a safe and successful first flight of the Conventional Take-Off and Landing variant this year. Dedicated program office engineering ensured critical design reviews met warfighter requirements. An early Production Readiness Review was conducted to ensure manufacturing capabilities were on track. Negotiations with nine partner countries resulted in a Production, Sustainment and Follow-on Development memorandum of understanding and cost share plan, setting the course for $5B of allied investment in the F-35. Successful accomplishment of Acquisition Plan commitments and swift contract negotiation enabled DoD to direct the start of Low Rate Initial Production. Effective collaboration with USAF, USN, USMC and international warfighter partners enabled timely adjustment of Key Performance Parameters and approval of a robust security architecture that protects critical information.

The last award of the evening was the prestigious John J. Welch, Jr. Award for Excellence in Acquisition Leadership, named in honor of John J. Welch, Jr., Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition from 1987 to 1992, in recognition of his significant contributions. The Welch award recognizes teams comprised of personnel at the program office level or below, for accomplishments demonstrating excellence in acquisition leadership, achieved through a teamwork approach. The winner was the Predator Reaper Team.

In recognition of the stellar Global War on Terror-winning, life-saving contributions of the 658th Aeronautical Systems Squadron to Operations ENDURING FREEDOM and IRAQI FREEDOM. MQ-1 Predator has become the Air Force's premier weapon system in support of these operations, exceeding the expectations of our warfighters. Especially noteworthy is the continuous support of ten 24/7/365 combat orbits, the delivery of 24 MQ-1s, and the doubled MQ-1 production rate in response to a short-notice Congressional 129 million dollar plus-up. Lightning Fast Development and Fielding have become descriptive terminology for the Predator team as proven by the six month earlier-than-planned delivery of the Multi-Aircraft Control Ground Control Station and the successful addressing of the Air Combat Command Commander's direction to accelerate MQ-9 inventory aircraft fielding. The MQ-9 Reaper team continues to make great advancements in this aircraft's capabilities and in providing warfighters with expanded precision-guided weapons capabilities and payload options. MQ-9 Reaper has logged over 6,500 flight hours to date, and the team is continuing to successfully address the program's development, demonstration and production aspects while simultaneously advancing Reaper interim combat capability and early fielding. The innovative and dedicated contributions of the Predator Reaper team are continuing to provide persistent war-winning, life-saving Global War on Terror combat capabilities. The distinctive accomplishments of the Predator Reaper Acquisition Team reflect the highest credit upon themselves, the Air Force acquisition community, and the United States Air Force.