On 8 November 2000, the National Security Agency successfully accomplished its initial acquisition milestone under its new acquisition program, and released a draft Request for Proposal (RFP) to industry for concept studies. NSA's ongoing acquisition reform is the result of Director Lt Gen Michael V. Hayden's transformation efforts to improve and modernize NSA into the 21st century and continue its long tradition of preserving national security for the United States.
This milestone was accomplished when a newly-formed NSA Acquisition Review Board met and approved an acquisition program for concept studies for TRAILBLAZER, which is one of NSA's major SIGINT modernization programs. These studies will explore, identify and produce system concepts and architectures for the TRAILBLAZER initiative.
This heightened level of acquisition discipline is the result of guidance from the NSA Senior Acquisition Executive office, headed by Mr. Harry D. Gatanas. The new review process included broad representation from the Intelligence Community and Defense, including senior members from the staff of the Director of Central Intelligence, the Assistant Secretary for Command, Control, Communications and Intelligence (ASD C3I), and representation from the Military Service Cryptologic Elements, in addition to the key components from within NSA.
A draft Request for Proposal for concept studies was released for comment earlier this month. NSA plans to award up to three study contracts in February 2001.