45th SW Airman becomes first enlisted in DoD to win award

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Zoe Thacker
  • 45th Space Wing Public Affairs

A 45th Space Wing Airman became the first enlisted service member in the Department of Defense to win the Excellence in Partnership Acquisitions Savings Award in October of this year.

Tech. Sgt. James Sempter, a 45th Mission Support Group Detachment 1 contract manager, accepted this award in Falls Church, Virginia, on Nov. 7, 2018.

Each year, the award is given by the Coalition for Government Procurement and is presented to one person, chosen from federal agencies like the Department of Defense, who has developed ways to save the federal government money.

Sempter is the contracting officer’s representative for the Kennedy Environmental and Medical contract and he oversees the technical operations for a contractor team. The team is tasked with providing occupational, radiation and food safety, as well as environmental health services for NASA’s Kennedy Space Center and Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.

“I gathered information from over 30 agencies and created a new tracking mechanism which is now used by my contracting officer, the contractor I observe and all the customers,” said Sempter. “I felt I needed to develop a better way to track services in order to do my job to the best of my ability.”

Sempter developed and managed this detailed customer support program through a tracking matrix. The matrix enables all contractors and customers to understand and request specific services that are broken down by work orders and line of accounting information.

The development of Sempter’s proactive tool significantly improved the transparency of government contract surveillance and enabled the 45th Contracting Squadron to reallocate $160,000 back to the government – a 20 percent savings for the U.S. Air Force in the 2018 fiscal year.

“This is my biggest career accomplishment and I’m extremely proud and humbled,” said Sempter. “I know there are thousands of contracting and acquisitions professionals throughout our country who are working just as hard and as passionately as I am to save taxpayer dollars. I work hard to make sure the Air Force is operating in the safest and healthiest environment possible.”

According to Lt. Col. Arthur Morse, 45th Mission Support Group Detachment 1 commander, Sempter excels in more aspects than just developing a tool that saved the Air Force over $100,000.

“Sergeant Sempter is the backbone of our organization,” said Morse. “The amount of time, money and services saved from his innovation improved processes in our organization, from the Air Force level all the way down to our detachment. He goes above and beyond in all of his work and that’s why he won the Acquisitions Savings Award.