By Billy Cody, CHESS Public Affairs
The Computer Hardware, Enterprise Software and Solutions (CHESS) team bid farewell to Ms. Sammi Foong on June 9, 2016, at Burton’s Grill in Alexandria, VA. Mr. Tom Neff, Project Director for Enterprise Services and former Product Lead (PL) of CHESS, awarded a director’s coin and meritorious plaque to Ms. Foong for her dedicated service to CHESS.
Ms. Foong served as Deputy Product Lead at CHESS for more than three years, providing management and leadership in support of the PL. As Deputy PL, she oversaw day-to-day operations and activities essential to providing flexible procurement strategy for Army users procuring IT hardware, software, and services. Ms. Foong was also instrumental in expanding CHESS’s training and outreach efforts and developing its public affairs strategy.
“Her ability to forge effective partnerships with industry, the Army CIO/G-6 and Army Contracting Command was instrumental in ensuring CHESS was able to support the Soldier with the solution they needed, when they needed it,” Mr. Neff read from the plaque. “Sammi's commitment to excellence set the standard for the entire CHESS team to emulate. Her professionalism and unwavering commitment reflect great credit upon herself, PEO Enterprise Information Systems and the United States Army.”
Ms. Foong will continue her service in the PEO EIS family as PL of Force Management Systems (FMS) where she succeeds Dr. David Powers, who retired in March 2016.
Posted June 23, 2016
A safe place among the KaSTARS: NASA considering surplus Army satellite antennas for asteroid detection
By Anthony Castranova, Telecommunications Management Specialist, WESS
On Feb.15, 2013, an asteroid estimated to have been only 55 feet in diameter plunged into Earth’s atmosphere at many times the speed of sound. Friction with the air soon heated the falling rock until it became white hot and finally exploded over Chelyabinsk, Russia, shattering windows and damaging buildings. More than 1,500 people were injured by the blast. Luckily, the Chelyabinsk asteroid exploded in the air rather than crashing into the ground — the impact of a rocky asteroid the size of a shopping mall could easily raise a dust cloud that would block out the sun for decades, causing an unending winter and possibly wiping out all life on Earth.
Asteroids consisting of rock, iron and ice are constantly traveling through space, and many of them cross the Earth’s orbit every week. Some of these asteroids are no larger than a grain of sand while others are miles long. A collision with larger asteroids could spell doom for the planet, so, to counter this threat, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is developing a network of Ka-band radar antennas that will scan space for objects on a collision course with Earth to provide sufficient warning for NASA to take defensive action. The extremely high radio frequencies used by the Ka-band will allow NASA observers to determine the size, direction, speed and, in some cases, the composition of the approaching object. NASA has dubbed this project Ka-band Object Observation and Monitoring (KaBOOM).
To aid in their effort, NASA contacted Defense Communications and Transmission System (DCATS) requesting two surplus Ka-band satellite earth terminals. NASA will use the antennas for feasibility testing and, eventually, to provide initial space observation and monitoring capabilities. The surplus antennas are part of DCATS’ Ka-band Satellite Transmit and Receive System (KaSTARS) program, which provide enterprise-level satellite communications services for DOD users world-wide. The two terminals requested by NASA are currently in storage, as the Army has recently approved the disposal of surplus terminals. Since KaSTARS is being replaced by a new DCATS program, the Modernized Enterprise Terminal, the KaSTARS terminals are no longer needed. Transferring these terminals to NASA will save the Army the expenses of storing and eventually disposing of the surplus equipment.
NASA personnel recently inspected the KaSTARS installation at the Joint Satellite Engineering Center in Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, and also visited the warehouse in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania, to view the terminals. NASA plans to ship the terminals to the Kennedy Space Center in Titusville, Florida, for assembly and testing. Once operational, the KaSTARS antennas will become the initial project KaBOOM antennas, scanning the sky for threats from outer space.
Transferring the surplus KaSTARS terminals to NASA will provide project KaBOOM, which is in the early stages of development, with valuable equipment for the proof of concept, initial testing and startup phases at little cost. NASA, the Army and the entire planet will benefit from this transfer as NASA develops a radar system that will alert them of potential life-ending cosmic threats.
Posted June 16, 2016
By Billy Cody and Tricia Shelley, CHESS Public Affairs
The Computer Hardware, Enterprise Software and Solutions (CHESS) Consolidated Buy (CB) - 23 is open for ordering and now offers Windows 10 compliant devices!
CHESS offers two CB periods yearly. The CB-23 ordering period opened June 13 and runs through September 30. CB-23 is open to all Government agencies and employees eligible to buy through CHESS, and is the mandated source for Army desktop and notebook computers. Organizations that utilize the CB, regardless of the quantities secured, net significant savings.
The migration to Windows 10 is part of the DOD's effort to ensure a more secure computing environment for end-users and includes the deployment of essential security features. As part of the effort, CB-23 devices come pre-loaded with Windows 7 Army Golden Master (AGM) for desktops and notebooks and Windows 8.1 AGM for tablets and slates, and are able to support Windows 10. When Windows 10 AGM is pushed out, CB-23 devices will be ready for the upgrade.
In conjunction with this migration, the NETCOM Technical Authority (TA) "Implementation Memorandum for Army End-User computing Environment" has issued Trusted Platform Module 2.0 as a new requirement for Army users. While TPM 2.0 platforms are being offered under various categories within CB-23, customers are encouraged to use the CHESS CB Compare Tool that will classify which versions of TPM each device has. Some offerings may include TPM 1.2 with firmware that is upgradable in the future to TPM 2.0. Other offerings may only include a TPM 1.2 chip that is not upgradable.
Additional information about CB-23, Windows 10 migration, and TPM 2.0 can be found on the CHESS website at https://CHESS.army.mil.
Posted June 13, 2016
By Ms. Megan Quick, DLS Communications Team
On 16 May 2016, the Distributed Learning System (DLS) team bid farewell to MAJ Mike Alabre. MAJ Alabre was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal and the DLS Certificate of Appreciation for his support and contributions toward the training of Soldiers and DA Civilians. For the past four years, MAJ Alabre served as the Assistant Product Manager (APM) for DLS. As the APM for DLS, MAJ Alabre was responsible for the program’s life cycle sustainment, planning, and execution. He served as the military conduit for the Soldiers in the field for all matters dealing with the fielding of the Deployed Digital Campus. MAJ Alabre also served as the Army Learning Management System Contracting Officer Representative. These systems provide education and training access to Soldiers, units, and organizations by using web-based and video tele-training capabilities supporting the Warfighter. MAJ Alabre will continue his distinguished military career as the APM for Combat Engineer and Material Handling Equipment (CE/MHE) for the TACOM Life Cycle Management Command (LCMC). He will be responsible for providing the primary mission equipment to the Army's combat engineer brigades and material handling equipment to all Army organizations. CE/MHE is the life-cycle manager for over 200 various type-classified systems covering a worldwide fleet of approximately 20,000 vehicles. These programs support the current engineer forces within Stryker (Heavy) and Infantry Brigade Combat Teams, engineer support companies, vertical and horizontal companies, asphalt and concrete teams, and multirole bridge companies.
Posted June 02, 2016
By Mr. Matthew Maier, MC4 Product Director
Medical Communications for Combat Casualty Care (MC4) is proud and honored to congratulate Mr. Benjamin A. Pryor on his graduation from the Defense Acquisition University (DAU) Senior Service College Fellowship (SSCF) program today. Ben graduates as one of an elite group of individuals who have participated in the 10-month course. This year, eight graduates were a part of the SSCF Aberdeen Class of 2016, only the seventh class to have completed the challenging program since the SSCF program initiation in 2009. The graduation ceremony was hosted in the Myer Auditorium, Aberdeen Proving Ground (APG), Maryland, by the Mr. James Oman, Director of Aberdeen SSCF and included many Army acquisition senior leaders, program alumni, acquisition professionals, family, friends and distinguished guests. The ceremony was presided over by Mrs. Joanne S. Schoonover, Dean of the DAU Capital and Northeast Region and included keynote speaker Mr. Gary Martin, the Program Executive Officer for Command, Control and Communications Tactical. Other VIPs present included Mr. Larry Muzello, Deputy to the Commanding General for the U.S. Army Communications and Electronics Command, and Mr. James Amato, Director of the U.S. Army Materiel Systems Analysis Activity.
Over the course of the 10-month program, Ben and the other SSCF fellows participated in a variety of leadership, national security strategy and acquisition programs, conducted industry and governmental organization visits, and met with a variety of senior leaders including general officers, SES members and political appointees. Ben returns to MC4 on 5 July where he is being considered for additional acquisition opportunities at Fort Detrick, MD.
Posted June 02, 2016
By Mr. Francis O’Brien, STRATCOM IPPS-A
As part of the ceremony, McNulty was inducted as an honorary colonel into the Adjutant General Corps Regimental Association by COL Jack Usrey, Commandant General of the Adjutant General (AG) School, Chief of the AG Corps, and President of the National AG Corps Regimental Association (AGCRA). The award was established by the AGCRA to recognize the distinguished achievements and service of individuals who promote the objectives and purposes of the AG Corps and for improvements in the fields of personnel, administration and human resources (HR) management.
MG Horatio Gates was the first Adjutant General of the Army, or chief administrative officer, during the Revolutionary War. The medal that bears his namesake was awarded by U.S. Congressional resolution to commemorate his victories against the British in three key battles that prevented strategic British occupation of the Hudson Valley in N.Y.
McNulty was recognized for his revolutionary work over the past two years on IPPS-A, a revolutionary HR information management system that will modernize all Army HR components into one first-of-its-kind electronic system.
Posted June 02, 2016
By Enterprise Services Communications Team
On May 13, 2016, in a dual Change of Charter ceremony, Mr. Thomas Neff was officially named the Project Director, Enterprise Services (PD ES), a project office within the Army’s Program Executive Office Enterprise Information Systems (PEO EIS). Additionally, Mr. Dennis Kelly, who officially started in his role on April 3, 2016, formally received the charter as the Product Lead for Enterprise Computing (EC) within the PD ES organization.
During the ceremony held in the Heroes Auditorium on Fort Belvoir, Mr. Neff was joined by Acting PEO EIS Ms. Terry Watson and Mr. Douglas Haskin, who served as Acting PD ES since August 2015.
Mr. Neff was selected for the ES position by the Army Director, Acquisition Career Management- sponsored selection board in February 2016. In his role as PD ES, Mr. Neff will manage a project office responsible for acquiring, fielding and performing life cycle sustainment of enterprise level services supporting many of the Army Chief Information Officer’s high priority initiatives. He will provide leadership to a staff of more than 300 military, civilian and contractor personnel across five product offices, in three geographic locations.
Prior to accepting the role as PD ES, Mr. Neff served as the Product Lead, Computer Hardware, Enterprise Software and Solutions (CHESS) from July 2014 to May 2016. In that role, he was responsible for delivering, implementing and managing commercial information technology contracts that provide enterprise-wide, net-centric hardware, software and support services for the Army. CHESS is one of the five product offices within PD ES.
Ms. Watson, who presided over the ceremony, had this to say about Mr. Neff: “Tom did great things in his time at CHESS, his sense of leadership is incredible and he has a great relationship with everyone. I’d like to congratulate and thank him for his time and continued commitment."
In his remarks following the charter hand-off, Mr. Haskin echoed Ms. Watson’s sentiment. “I can’t think of a better, more qualified person to take over the reins of PD ES than Tom,” said Mr. Haskin. “It’s a leader’s job to look to the future, to not only think about the day-to-day but, the long-term future of the organization. I have no doubt Tom will do just that.” Mr. Haskin will return to his role as Deputy PD ES reporting to Mr. Neff.
After thanking his wife and family for their support, Mr. Neff touched on his government service. “I’d like to thank everyone at PEO EIS,” said Mr. Neff. “To my colleagues at CHESS you have done so much hard work and it was an honor to have been a part of your team. In the military I learned to lead by example, and it is without a doubt the most important lesson I have ever been taught. My promise to ES is to never stray from that lesson. I want you to hold me to that commitment. Thank you all and Godspeed.”
Immediately prior to the change of charter for Mr. Neff, a ceremony was held for Mr. Dennis Kelly, who officially accepted the charter for EC from Acting Product Lead, Mr. Keith Baylor, who served in the acting role from September 2015 to April 2016. As the head of EC, Mr. Kelly provides future-focused solutions that modernize and optimize enterprise information technology activities through cost effective and policy-compliant delivery of cutting edge infrastructure and services. Mr. Douglas Haskin presided over the event.
Before taking on the role of Product Lead for EC, Mr. Kelly served as a project officer with EC since its inception in 2013. As the Army Enterprise Service Desk Worldwide (AESD-W) lead, Mr. Kelly managed three service desk locations that handled one million incidents at 44 installations, as well as supporting the 1.5 million users of Army Knowledge Online and Enterprise Email. For Army Private Cloud (APC2), he facilitated the provision of cloud software as a service and infrastructure as a service for DOD customers.
“Dennis did great things at AESD-W and I have no doubt he’ll do great things at EC as we continue to support our Soldiers around the globe,” said Mr. Haskin.
Following Mr. Haskin’s remarks, Mr. Keith Baylor spoke to his continued support of Mr. Kelly, “I’d like to thank Dennis for all his support as leader of AESD-W. I look forward to supporting you in the same capacity that you supported me in my previous role.”
In his remarks, Mr. Kelly expressed gratitude for his selection and optimism for the future of EC. “I’d like to thank Keith and Doug for all their hard work, my wife and many mentors, some of whom are in this room,” said Mr. Kelly. “EC’s mission is to support the Army in its modernization effort. The EC team that Keith and my other predecessors have put together is up to the challenge. I’m honored to bring my experience, my faith, the examples of my mentors and family to support Tom and Ms. Watson as we move forward.”
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Posted May 26, 2016
By Judith Avery, PM AESIP Program Operations
On April 14, 2016, the Project Manager, Army Enterprise Systems Integration Program (PM AESIP), COL Harry Culclasure, hosted a Change of Charter ceremony for the GCSS-Army Product Manager (PdM).
During the ceremony, LTC Christopher Romero relinquished PdM responsibilities to Mr. Robert Zoppa, the former deputy, who will serve as the Acting PdM until board-selected replacement LTC Preston Hayward arrives this Summer.
The event, which took place at the GCSS-Army Headquarters building in Petersburg, Virginia, was attended by guests from the PM AESIP team, the U.S. Army Combined Arms Support Command, and the Lead System Integrator, as well as more than 80 employees of the GCSS-Army team. COL Culclasure and Mr. Zoppa both presented farewell gifts to LTC Romero in appreciation of his leadership during the past three years. The GCSS-Army team also held a luncheon to honor LTC Romero following the ceremony.
For more information about GCSS-Army, please visit the website http://www.gcss.army.mil/.
Posted April 19, 2016
By Michelle Walker, PL FMS, IT Specialist
Dr. David Powers concluded his 37 years of service at a retirement ceremony held on 31 March at Fort Belvoir, VA. Dr. Powers has been serving as the Project Director for Force Management System (FMS) under PEO EIS since January 2003. During Dr. Powers’ tenure at FMS, he was responsible for the successful integration and consolidation of a number of Force Management legacy automation systems and the current system serves as the Army’s base system for the Joint Chief of Staff Global Force Management Data Initiative. Dr. Powers has supported the Force Management business processes at all levels of the Army having previously worked both at the Army staff level within G-3/5/7 and Army Headquarters Major Command level within TRADOC.
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Posted April 08, 2016
By Ellyn Kocher, Communications Division
PEO EIS says a fond farewell to Mr. Reggie Madden, Deputy Product Lead, Automated Movement and Identification Solution (AMIS), who officially retired Mar. 4. Product Lead Mr. Jim Alexander, the AMIS team, and Mr. Madden’s friends, family and colleagues honored him for his contributions and 40 years’ combined service in a farewell reception held at the Fort Belvoir Officer’s Club February 24. “Reggie has been a tremendous manager,” said Mr. Alexander. “His efforts as an RF-ITV pioneer and early proponent integrator of RFID technology into DoD logistics have constructively impacted an entire generation of Soldiers. His co-workers also recognize Reggie for his friendliness and contagious laughter.” Many thanks to Mr. Madden for his years of dedicated service!
Posted March 14, 2016