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SSC-Natick Press Release

U.S. Army Soldier Systems Center-Natick
Public Affairs Office
Kansas Street
Natick, MA 01760-5012

Contact: Chief, Public Affairs Office
(508) 233-5340

Date: February 24, 2003
No: 03-04

Director Selected for Presidential Award

NATICK, Mass. The director of the Natick Soldier Center at the U.S. Army Soldier Systems Center here has been selected as a 2002 Meritorious Executive by President George W. Bush.

Philip Brandler is among 5 percent of the 6,100 career members of the Senior Executive Service (SES) who received the Presidential Rank Award, which is intended to honor a group of senior executives who have provided exceptional service to the American people over an extended period of time.

Selection is based on an individual's ability to lead people, lead change, deliver results, manage resources and establish productive relationships.

"These senior executives are being honored for their outstanding leadership accomplishments in some of the nation's most critical programs, such as health, commerce, education, environment, international affairs, and the national defense," said Kay Cole James, U.S. Office of Personnel Management director, in a news release.

As the Natick Soldier Center director, Brandler is responsible for soldier-related research, development, and engineering for the Army and other services that require the integration of a highly diverse set of technologies supporting the development of more than 1,000 items. Commodity areas consist of clothing and individual equipment, combat rations and field feeding equipment, shelters and field services equipment, and personnel and cargo airdrop systems.

In this capacity, Brandler is a key leader in the Department of Defense, ensuring that the soldier is managed as an integrated system meriting attention comparable to other warfighting platforms. He oversees a work force of more than 500 civilian employees and an annual budget of nearly $300 million.

Brandler's accomplishments characterize him as a significant force in ensuring that America's servicemembers are the best protected, best-equipped and best-fed in the world.

Under his leadership, the groundbreaking "system of systems" program--Military Operations in Urban Terrain Advanced Concept Technology Demonstration--successfully demonstrated a whole new military capability for the future. Most recently, he established and is now overseeing the execution of the Objective Force Warrior program, the Army's premier scientific effort that focuses on providing the soldier of the future with revolutionary new capabilities.

He has taken steps to recruit and retain a high-quality, diverse work force, and under his direction, aggressively pursued partnering and leveraging arrangements with industry and other government agencies.

Furthermore, the establishment of more than 45 Cooperative Research and Development Agreements has saved resources while achieving mission goals that mutually benefit the private sector. As a result of these efforts, he was awarded the Federal Laboratory Consortium's Director of the Year for 2001.

Cited accomplishments also include the pursuit of initiatives to decrease cycle time, such as integrating Research and Development (R&D), and production contracts for full-scale R&D programs that reduce planning time for initial equipment fielding from 66 to 33 months.

Under his direction, the NSRDEC has had a record of being the most successful in the Army in the Savings Through Value Enhancement (SAVE) program, with a ratio of savings to investment of 264:1 in fiscal year 2001. The NSRDEC also exceeded its Value Engineering program saving goal with $155.8 million in projected savings that same year.

Of particular note, Brandler led the establishment of the National Protection Center, a joint-agency pilot program based in Natick.

The center operates in conjunction with the NASA Ames Research Center and the National Institute for Justice Office for Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology as a consolidated source of expertise in protective technology and in anticipating threats. The center leverages efforts of federal, state and local government, as well as industry and academic researchers to provide the latest in protective equipment.

Under his direction, the Natick Soldier Center was named the Army's 2001 Research and Development Organization of the Year in its class.

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This page last updated on 24 February 2003.