The press office of Senator Jim Webb (D-Virginia) today announced the names of seven of the eight panelists on the Commission on Wartime Contracting. POGO has long supported this concept and is glad to see its progression into becoming reality.
Now the work really begins and not a moment too soon. Unlike the congressional foresight shown during World War II, where at the onset of war the Senate created the original Committee to Examine the National Defense Program (more popularly known as the Truman Committee), this new Commission begins its work about six years after our major conflicts abroad began. It does have some help: Inspectors General, such as the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction and the Defense Department and State Inspectors General, and other oversight personnel like those at the Government Accountability Office, Defense Contract Audit Agency and Defense Contract Management Agency provide insight into the last several years. But even with this firepower - at its current level it is woefully inadequate - the massive level of contracting has led to a situation where there may be potentially thousands of criminal procurement fraud cases, according to House Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Henry Waxman (D-California).
Those commissioners are (the first four are the Democratic congressional picks, the last three are the Republican congressional and President Bush's choices):
- Michael J. Thibault, to serve as Co-Chair.
Mike Thibault is a Director at Navigant Consulting, Inc. (NCI). Mr. Thibault has 34 years experience in government contract accounting, pricing, subcontract audit, federal contract compliance, regulatory compliance, cost accounting standards, and internal control systems audits and implementation. Prior to joining NCI, Mr. Thibault spent 31 years with the Defense Contract Audit Agency (DCAA) and was the DCAA Deputy Director from 1994-2005. Mr. Thibault earned a B.A. in Business (Accounting) from Southern Oregon University, and an M.A. in Management, from Central Michigan University. He holds a CPA with the State of Washington.
- Charles Tiefer.
Charles Tiefer is a Professor of Law at the University of Baltimore School of Law. Professor Tiefer joined the faculty in 1995. Previously he served as acting general counsel, solicitor and deputy general counsel of the U.S. House of Representatives for 11 years. Professor Tiefer served in 1996 as deputy minority counsel of the U.S. House “Bosniagate”investigating sub-committee and in 1987 as special deputy chief counsel of the U.S. House Iran-Contra committee. He is a member of the District of Columbia Bar. Professor Tiefer earned a B.A., summa cum laude, from Columbia College in 1974 and a J.D., magna cum laude, from Harvard Law School in 1977. He is the author of the book “Government Contract Law: Cases and Materials.” [POGO note: Tiefer is also on POGO's advisory board]
Linda J. Gustitus.
Linda Gustitus had a long distinguished career working in the U.S. Congress (1979-2002), serving as the Chief of Staff to Senator Carl Levin (D-MI) (2002), as Democratic Staff Director, Subcommittee on Oversight of Government Management; Subcommittee on Nuclear Nonproliferation and Federal Services; Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, of the Governmental Affairs Committee for Senator Levin (1980-2001), and as Legislative Assistant to Senator Levin (1979). Ms. Gustitus also served as a Trial Attorney, Civil Division at the U.S. Department of Justice (1977-1979) and as a prosecutor in the office of the Cook County Assistant State’s Attorney. Ms. Gustitus was an Adjunct Professor of Law at American University School of Law (2000-2006), George Washington University Graduate School of Public Policy (1994-1996), and the Washington Internship Institute (2003-2006), as well as a lecturer at the Government Affairs Institute, Georgetown University (1995-present). Ms. Gustitus earned a B.A., from Oberlin College in 1969, and a J.D., cum laude, from Wayne State University School of Law in 1975.
- Clark Kent Ervin.
Since January 2005, Clark Ervin has served as Director of the Homeland Security Initiative at the Aspen Institute. Mr. Ervin served as the first Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, from January 2003 to December 2004. Prior to his service at DHS, he served as the Inspector General of the U.S. Department of State, from 2001 to 2003. His service in the George W. Bush Administration is preceded by his service as the Associate Director of Policy in the White House Office of National Service in the George H.W. Bush Administration. A native Houstonian, Mr. Ervin served in the state government of Texas from 1995 to 2001, first as Assistant Secretary of State, and then as a Deputy Attorney General. He has practiced law twice in the private sector, with the Houston based firms of Vinson & Elkins, and Locke, Liddell, & Sapp, respectively. Mr. Ervin earned a B.A. degree, cum laude, in Government from Harvard in 1980, an M.A. degree in Politics, Philosophy, and Economics from Oxford University in 1982 as a Rhodes Scholar, and a J. D. degree cum laude from Harvard Law School in 1985. He is the author of the book “Open Target: Where America is Vulnerable to Attack.”
- Dean G. Popps: Commissioner* *Minority Appointments: *Appointed by House Minority Leader Boehner*
Acting Assistant Secretary of the Army (Acquisition, Logistics and Technology)
Mr. Popps served as the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of the
Army for Acquisitions, Logistics and Technology (ALT) with additional
duties as the Director of Iraq Reconstruction and Program Management
for ALT, a position to which he was appointed on July 26, 2004 by
President Bush. In 2003, Mr. Popps was recruited to join the
Department of Defense's Coalitional Provisional Authority (CPA) in
Baghdad, Iraq, where he served as Director of Industrial Conversion to
the Coalition, working to restructure the former regime's 52 Military
Industry Commission companies. Subsequently, he helped create the new
Iraqi Ministry of Science and Technology and served as the CPA Deputy
Senior Advisor to that ministry. In this capacity, he helped supervise
the restructuring of the former Iraqi Atomic Energy Commission and he
lead efforts to re-direct and retain thousands of former Iraqi WMD
scientists. He has been involved in non-proliferation, intelligence,
and radiation source collection issues that have impacted post-war
Iraq. He also served on the CPA's Iraq Transition Planning Team in June
2004 and worked to transfer authority to the new Iraqi government. He
has received several awards with regard to his work in Iraq, most
notably The Joint Civilian Service Commendation Award from Ambassador
L. Paul Bremer. Prior to entering government Mr. Popps was a successful
high-tech Chief Executive Officer, attorney, and consultant. During the
last two decades, he served as founder and Chief Executive Officer of
the Dallas Fort Worth Teleport for fifteen years, before it was sold
successfully to a NYSE listed competitor, and as Chief Operating
Officer of Communications Technology Management, Inc. Mr. Popps was an
initial incorporator of C-SPAN and
provided satellite transmission for this public affairs cable network. He also initiated the first satellite link between ABC Television and The National Captioning Institute for the delivery of captioned services to hearing impaired viewers among numerous other accomplishments.
A pioneer of the teleport concept in the United States, Mr. Popps served on the Board of Directors and as Secretary General and CEO of the World Teleport Association (WTA). He served on the Presidential Trade Mission to Greece and as an advisor on business development to Middle Eastern heads of state.
From 2001 to 2003, following the sale of his company and prior to entering government, he served as Operations Supervisor for the single largest Chapter 7 bankruptcy liquidation in Northern Virginia history, involving Computer Learning Centers, Inc. Working at the direction of the trustees and Federal bankruptcy court, he coordinated the disposal of assets in ten states and helped to coordinate the claims of 1,500+ employees, 9,000+ creditors, and resolved hundreds of liquidation issues.
An Army ROTC student at Marquette University, and a graduate of the Potomac School of Law, he worked in the District of Columbia criminal court system, the U.S. House of Representatives and the Senate. He is a member of bar associations in the District of Columbia and the State of Georgia.
- Grant S. Green: Commissioner *Appointed by President George W. Bush *
Former Under Secretary of State for Management on March 30, 2001 – January 25, 2005.
Prior to being appointed Under Secretary of State for Management, Mr. Green served as Chairman and President of Global Marketing and Development Solutions Inc. (GMD Solutions) and as Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for a major consulting and marketing company. He also served as Assistant Secretary of Defense and was involved in total force management policies, military and civilian manpower and personnel matters, and manpower requirements for weapons support. As such, he was responsible for structural analysis of active forces, reserve components and civilian employees, and development of military and civilian manpower requirements. He was also responsible for Department of Defense policies concerning recruiting, advertising, retention, compensation, training and education, commercial affairs, labor-management relations and wage fixing authority, equal opportunity, family and community services, accident prevention and safety, dependents education, morale-recreation and welfare, and drug policy and enforcement.
Prior to being appointed Assistant Secretary of Defense, Mr. Green served in the White House as Special Assistant to President Reagan for National Security Affairs and Executive Secretary of the National Security Council. There he directed the NSC Staff in their day-to-day support of the President and his National Security Advisor.
In addition, Mr. Green was employed in several senior management positions with Sears World Trade (SWT). There he developed and managed a number of business opportunities involving SWT and government contractors, oversaw the regional overseas office structure and several joint ventures, and negotiated numerous business/trade transactions.
Before joining SWT, Mr. Green served for 22 years in the U.S. Army. During this time, he served in a variety of Infantry and Aviation command and staff assignments including those with the 82nd Airborne Division, the 25th Infantry Division, and the 2nd Infantry Division, where he commanded the 2nd Aviation Battalion. He also served with the 1st Cavalry Division and the 101st (Airborne) Airmobile Division in Vietnam where he commanded an assault helicopter unit. Major staff assignments include 4 years on the Army General Staff in the Pentagon and 4 years on the immediate staff of the Secretary and Deputy Secretary of Defense.
Mr. Green earned a B.A. in Political Science from the University of Arkansas and a M.S. in Management from George Washington University. He also completed professional courses of study at both the Army Command and General Staff College and the U.S. Air Force Air War College. He is the recipient of numerous military decorations as well as the Department of Defense award for Distinguished Public Service.
- Dov S. Zakheim: Commissioner *Appointed by President George W. Bush *
Dov S. Zakheim is a Vice President of Booz Allen Hamilton, a global strategy and technology consulting firm, where he is a leader in the firm's global defense business, working with U.S. Combatant Commanders and allied and coalition ministries of defense worldwide.
From 2001 to April 2004 he served as the Under Secretary of Defense
(Comptroller) and Chief Financial Officer for the Department of
Defense, acting as the Secretary of Defense's principal advisor on
financial and budgetary matters, developing and managing the world's
From 2002-2004 Dr. Zakheim was DOD's coordinator of civilian programs in Afghanistan. He also helped organize both the June 2003 UN donors' conference on Iraq reconstruction and the October 2003 Madrid Donors' Conference.
From 1987 to 2001 he was both corporate vice president of System Planning Corporation, a technology, analysis firm based in Arlington, VA, and chief executive officer of SPC International Corp., a subsidiary specializing in political, military and economic consulting. During the 2000 presidential campaign, he served as a senior foreign policy advisor to then-Governor Bush.
From 1985 until March 1987, Dr. Zakheim was Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Planning and Resources in the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense (Policy), playing an active role in the Department's system acquisition, strategic planning, programming and budget processes. Dr. Zakheim held several other DOD posts from 1981 to 1985. Earlier, he was a principal analyst in the National Security and International Affairs Division of the Congressional Budget Office.
Dr. Zakheim has served on a number of government, corporate, non-profit
and charitable boards. His government service includes two terms on the
United States Commission for the Preservation of America's Heritage
Abroad (1991-93); the Task Force on Defense Reform (1997); the first
Board of Visitors of the Department of Defense Overseas Regional
Schools (1998); and the Defense Science Board task force on "The Impact
of DOD Acquisition Policies on the Health of the Defense Industry"
(2000). He is a member of the Defense Business Board <http://www.defenselink.mil/dbb
A 1970 graduate of Columbia University with a B.A., *summa cum laude*, in government, Dr. Zakheim also studied at the London School of Economics. He earned his doctorate in economics and politics at St. Antony's College, University of Oxford, where he was a National Science Foundation Graduate Fellow, a Columbia College Kellett Fellow, and a St. Antony's College Research Fellow. He has been an adjunct Senior Fellow of the Council on Foreign Relations, an adjunct Scholar of the Heritage Foundation and a Senior Associate of the Center for Strategic and International Studies. Dr. Zakheim has been an adjunct professor at the National War College, Yeshiva University, Columbia University and Trinity College, Hartford, Conn., where he was a Presidential Scholar.
The author of a dozen books or monographs, and of numerous articles, Dr. Zakheim has lectured and provided print, radio and television commentary on national defense and foreign policy issues domestically and internationally. He is the recipient of numerous awards for his government, professional and civic work, including the Defense Department's highest civilian award in 1986, 1987 and 2004.
-- Nick Schwellenbach