DISA contracting officer earns national award
Office of Strategic Communication and Public Affairs
The National Contract Management Association honored Michelle Rand, a team lead/contracting officer in DISA’s Defense Information Technology Contracting Organization, as the 2021 Procurement Round Table Elmer B. Staats Contracting Professional Excellence Award winner during the association’s World Congress event July 27 in Denver, Colorado.
“This prestigious award recognizes a contracting professional with a remarkable record and reputation for excellence and exceptional achievement,” said Kenneth Oscar, NCMA awards chairman of the Procurement Round Table. “We are fortunate, indeed, to have in our ranks an individual like Ms. Rand who has contributed so much to our profession.”
This Staats award recognizes a federal acquisition professional who has significantly contributed to contracting policy or operations. This is the second consecutive year that a DITCO employee has won this award, with Shannon Sanders, contracting officer with DITCO-Scott, receiving the honor in 2020.
“I was shocked and honored when I found out about this award,” Rand said. “I think I had to reread the email five times because I didn’t believe it. Contracting can be a hard field to be in because you don’t always see the end-result of the months, and sometimes years, of work. Getting this award reinforced that what we do in contracting is important and does have real world impacts.”
Before joining the federal service at DISA seven years ago, Rand worked business development efforts for a contractor that had several DISA contracts.
“I was intrigued by the contracting process and thought it would be interesting to be on the government side of the process,” she said. “There is something new every day, and I am always learning. However, most importantly, I like the people I work with. My co-workers have become like friends and family and have been instrumental in my growth at DISA and in the contracting field.”
Rand has received a few Procurement Services Division annual awards and was part of a team that received a DISA level award, but this was her first individual award at the national level. She said this award would not have been possible without her PSD team including her leadership, fellow team leads, team members, price analysts, policy team, and the procurement attorney.
“Over the past seven years, these people have taught me many lessons that I continue to apply today,” she said.
DITCO Director Douglas Packard said Rand has been at the forefront of several of DITCO’s significant contract successes during the last two fiscal years.
“Noteworthy contributions and significant accomplishments have been her trademark over her DISA tenure, but especially over the past 24-month period,” Packard said. “Michelle has significantly increased Department of Defense lethality through her contracting prowess and leadership.”
Rand was the contracting officer (KO) for the mission critical $199 million Global Service Center contract. That contract provided service desk support to DISA, as well as 12 Fourth Estate (4E) organizations, servicing about 2.1 million users, handling an average of 207,000 interactions per month, operating on a 24/7/365 days a year basis servicing 86 locations worldwide.
Rand is the KO for the $36.6 million Defense Collaboration Services contract. This contract includes with real-time enterprise tools that provide users conference, chat and collaboration abilities including DoD Secure Access File Exchange. She is also the KO for the $34 million Global Video Services contract providing internet protocol videoconferencing services ensuring uninterrupted global connectivity to joint forces.
Rand also served as the contract specialist for the award of the $125 million DoDNet Generation 1 pathfinder contract that established the requirements baseline for the $11.2 billion Defense Enclave Services acquisition under the DoD’s 4ENO Initiative.
“Michelle led this herculean effort with the DoDNet contract to consolidate the 4E’s commodity IT services, ensuring the network and system applications are available on a 24/7/365 basis to 20,000 4E users at 75 sites worldwide,” Packard said. “She is widely recognized across DISA as a future senior leader with tremendous interpersonal skills, leadership, exceptional business acumen, and determination.”
Looking ahead, Rand said she plans to settle into her role as team lead and strives to be a contracting source of knowledge for her team.
“In this field, it helps to make connections with your team members and customers as, ultimately, the goal is to get the best value product/service for the government and the warfighter,” she said. “Only with teamwork and information sharing is this possible. I hope to one day be half the mentor that my mentors have been to me and continue to grow and share in the contracting field. Just like every other field, there can be frustrating days in contracting and showing up with a positive attitude and curious spirit is instrumental.”
Michelle Rand, center, a team lead/contracting officer at DISA, is honored with the 2021 Procurement Round Table Elmer B. Staats Contracting Professional Excellence Award during the association’s World Congress event July 27 in Denver, Colorado. Joining Rand from left are Kraig Conrad, NCMA chief executive officer, Amanda Christian, NCMA president, Wendy Masiello, NCMA president-elect, and Douglas Packard, DISA’s Defense Information Technology Contracting Organization director.
Published September 21, 2021