Defense

July 17, 2012

New acquisition chief describes goals, challenges

by Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

Frank Kendall describes his new job as all about supporting the new defense strategy and the budget that puts that strategy in place.

“My job on the acquisition, technology and logistics side of the house is to execute in support of that strategy,” the new undersecretary of defense for the same portfolio told reporters at the Pentagon July 16.

Kendall said there are important long-term strategic ideas and goals that must be considered for the long-term health of national security. The department’s mission, he said, is to recruit the armed forces of the United States, to have technological superiority and to maintain a force that is not hollow.

His emphasis remains on the still unfinished wars — Afghanistan and the broader war on terror. “The department needs … to make sure that the programs we start are actually affordable and get them into production and fielding,” he said. “That’s by setting some constraints at the beginning of the program so they meet that criteria.”

Making defense acquisition more efficient is a key to the strategy. The department’s Better Buying Power initiative “is really just a label for continuous improvement,” he said. “Somebody asked me the other day if I am a transformational person or evolutionary person – I’m evolutionary. I believe in continuous incremental improvement across the board and just looking for ways to do that.”

To Kendall, that’s what Better Buying Power is all about. “It’s not a specific set of rules, it’s a philosophy for continuous improvement.”

The undersecretary wants to maintain a viable defense industrial base during a time of contraction. “We need to keep it healthy, and that means keeping it profitable and it also means keeping it lean and productive.” The department, he added, also must work to discover better incentives for the defense industry.

All these goals, he said, depend on the acquisition workforce.

“At the end of the day our success depends on the quality and capacity of our people,” Kendall said. “Building that capacity is high on my list.”

But the most important goal is protecting America’s future, Kendall said. His organization, he added, must work to develop the technology needed to stay ahead of any potential enemy, maintain the capability to build these technologies and ensure the department attracts the best people for the jobs.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Headlines September 19, 2014

News: McKeon on broader military authorization: Anything can ‘fail or pass’ - Rep. Howard “Buck” McKeon, R-Calif., chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, said if Congress returns after the midterm elections to weigh a broader military authorization for the battle against Islamic State, it might not pass. Defense contractor gets 7 years for giving secrets...
 
 

News Briefs September 19, 2014

U.S. military deaths in Afghanistan at 2,203 As of Sept. 16, 2014, at least 2,203 members of the U.S. military had died in Afghanistan as a result of the U.S.-led invasion of Afghanistan in late 2001, according to an Associated Press count. At least 1,823 military service members have died in Afghanistan as a result...
 
 

Pratt & Whitney, U.S. Air Force complete qualification for F135 engine testing

Pratt & Whitney, a United Technologies Corp. , together with its U.S. Air Force partner at the F135 Heavy Maintenance Center at Tinker Air Force Base, Okla., celebrated another significant milestone qualification for F135 engine testing at the Oklahoma City Air Logistics Complex. OC-ALC which in addition to engine testing is also qualified to perform...
 

 
Navy photograph

Triton has first cross-country flight from Palmdale

Northrop Grumman photograph The MQ-4C Triton Unmanned Aircraft System takes off from Northrop Grummanís Palmdale, Calif., facility Sept. 17 for its first cross-country flight to Naval Air Station Patuxent, River, Md. PALMDALE,...
 
 
Air Force photograph by Michael J. Pausic

Future of NATO: Adapting to a new security environment

Air Force photograph by Michael J. Pausic Gen. Phillip Breedlove informs the assembled crowd about the results of the recent NATO Summit and the areas of instability that affect Europe that have regional implications. Seated in...
 
 
Air Force photograph by Scott M. Ash

AFRL commander describes Air Force’s technology vision

Air Force photograph by Scott M. Ash Maj. Gen. Thomas Masiello takes a question from an audience member after discussing Air Force Research Laboratory breakthrough technologies during the 2014 Air Force Association’s Air ...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>