MACDILL AFB, Fla. – Department of Defense acquisition executives visited U.S. Special Operations Command headquarters for the Special Operations Forces Acquisition Summit held in Tampa, Fla. Oct. 30, 2014. This is the first time the summit was held in Tampa.
“The summit is a twice a year meeting between the USSOCOM and our partners in the Office of the Secretary of Defense, service acquisition offices and other defense agencies so that we can synchronize acquisition, technology and logistics activities and resolve issues which are impacting USSOCOM’s ability to accomplish the mission,” said James Geurts, USSOCOM Acquisition Executive.
The Honorable Alan Estevez, principal deputy undersecretary of defense for acquisition, technology and logistics, addressed USSOCOM’s acquisition workforce regarding current issues within the DOD acquisition community.
“Every dollar saved through acquisitions excellence brings back a dollar to the Department of Defense to support those serving around the world in the fight. I want to make sure we are giving our service men and women everything they need to accomplish their mission, which is to defend this nation,” said Estevez.
USSOCOM is the only combatant command with acquisition authorities like the military services.
“These authorities were a key component of the congressional law which created USSOCOM which allow the USSOCOM commander, through the USSOCOM acquisition executive, to plan and execute science and technology and acquisition of SOF peculiar equipment and services, as well as the sustainment of those capabilities,” said Geurts.
“USSOCOM’s SOF acquirers, technologists, and logisticians, using a SOF mindset, rapidly equip and sustain SOF capabilities for all the SOF components.”
Assistant Secretary of the Army (Acquisition, Logistics and Technology) Honorable Heidi Shyu and the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition Honorable Dr. Bill LaPlante, were also in attendance.
“The visitors were briefed by SOF operators and program managers on a number of pieces of SOF equipment, including our GMV 1.1 tactical mobility vehicle, our latest weapons and target engagement systems, communication systems, and target, tracking and locating systems,” said Geurts. “They also had an opportunity to tour the U-28, USSOCOM’s premier manned intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance platform, and speak to Air Commandos about that system.”
The summit was important because it increases communication flow between the different services to ensure there is synchronization to bring the best technology, equipment and sustainability programs for special operations equipment.
“People are our most important asset, and as SOF acquirers, technologists, or logisticians, it’s our job to ensure they have the equipment and support needed to be effective,” said Geurts.