DSCA Director's Blog

Here you will find thoughts and messages from the Director of the Defense Security Cooperation Agency and his staff.

Friday, February 19, 2010

International Day at NAS Patuxent

Recently I was invited by Rear Admiral Steve Voetsch of the Navy's International Programs Office(Navy IPO), to join him, Rear Admiral Jeff Lemmons, Director for International Engagement (OPNAV N52), and Rino Pivirotto Navy IPO Deputy, and Mike Dougherty the Naval Air Systems Command, International Programs Leader at NAS Patuxent River for an International Day. Besides packing the station theater to standing room only with nearly 350 people, they linked, via video, sites at Point Mugu CA, China Lake CA, Washington DC, Lakehust NJ, Cherry Point NC, Orlando FL and Pensacola FL.

Our two hour event was split with the first half dedicated to briefings by DSCA, the Navy Staff and Navy IPO. For the DSCA presentation I emphasized the strategic importance Security Cooperation has become for our country, the improvements we have made in cycle time reduction and the increase in funds to the field activities. Rear Admiral Lemmons described in some detail, the importance of SC to Building Partner Capacity and Security Force Assistance for the Navy and the personal focus and attention Admiral Roughead, the Chief of Naval Operations, has placed upon Global Maritime Partnerships.

In turn, Rear Admiral Voetsch and Mr. Pivirotto discussed how Navy IPO has put Admiral Roughead's intent in operation for the Navy through the Systems Commands and Program Offices. The second half of the session allowed questions and answers. There were some great questions that provided a chance to clarify topics like the budget, standard level of service and more.

One particularly good question was, why does DSCA allow the services to conduct site surveys for common weapons to different standards? So I've turned that question into action. We are pulling the services together and working to get to a common ground, and hopefully eliminate the confusion this has caused our customers.

After the event, I received numerous compliments about the utility of the briefs and Q&A. The Navy intends to repeat the process with the Naval Sea Systems Command and Space and Naval Warfare Command. Hopefully we can conduct a similar event with the other services.

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