April 5, 2013

Kudos to Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno for clearly stating his service’s requirements regarding the Bradley Fighting Vehicle [“BAE prods Congress for Bradley funding unwanted by Army,” news story, April 1]. Whether Congress will bow to pressure from the contractor that builds the tanks, BAE Systems, and fund this unneeded effort remains to be seen, but this is a prime example of issues the Defense Department faces in its acquisition process, which is expected to be nimble, innovative, responsive and more “businesslike” in meeting the military’s needs. Its acquisition workforce, of which I was a part for eight years as a senior executive, must meet education, training and experience requirements set forth by Congress in the name of reform. Yet congressional members continue to present roadblocks.

What successful company streamlines its processes by adding more reporting and review requirements? What successful company rewards its team members by publicly haranguing their efforts? What successful company starts a fiscal year without an approved budget or funds efforts it doesn’t need? Perhaps acquisition reform needs to start in the halls of the Capitol.

Christine Stelloh-Garner, Huntingtown

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