SMDC deputy commander connects with industry during APBI

By Jason Cutshaw, USASMDCMarch 23, 2023

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REDSTONE ARSENAL, Alabama – The U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command’s senior civilian spoke to community and industry leaders about the command’s contract requirements.

Richard P. De Fatta, USASMDC deputy to the commander, and other Team Redstone leaders spoke at the Advance Planning Briefing for Industry, or APBI, at the Bob Jones auditorium, March 21. The briefings, which were hosted March 21-23, assist industry, research and academic partners to plan and prepare for future requirements with government contracts.

“AMCOM’s Advanced Planning Briefing to Industry is one of the few opportunities to engage directly with all of our current industry partners and potential future partners to provide an update on the command, its priorities, and some insight into our path ahead,” De Fatta said. “SMDC is a dynamic organization with elements dispersed around the world and a broad, 24/7 no-fail diverse mission. Coming out of the COVID environment allows us have more direct, face-to-face engagements with the intent of expanding our base of qualified and knowledgeable performers associated with our specific mission execution and proponent equities.

“I want to also convey that SMDC is a great place to work,” he added. “The best on Redstone Arsenal according to the results of the most recent Federal Employees Viewpoint survey - and along with our diverse and very current mission execution - a great place for our industry partners to contribute to that mission.”

De Fatta said APBI is an important venue and serves to initiate conversation between the government and industry teams here that actively partner with the common goal of supporting the warfighter.

“We are always interested in industry feedback on how well we are doing providing information and projecting future opportunities to industry for their consideration and advice,” De Fatta said. “I welcome the interaction with a critical element of our command team.”

APBI includes briefings on programs that will be issuing solicitations for competitive bids within an approximately three-to-five-year timeframe. APBI is unclassified and open to all interested contractors, large and small businesses, and academia as well as other government stakeholders.

Sheri M. Baskins, USASMDC G-8 Contract Support Division chief, said USASMDC is a key Redstone Arsenal organization that has long been committed to providing industry with its forecasted future opportunities. She added that participation at the fiscal year 2023 Team Redstone APBI is one way the command demonstrates this commitment by providing transparency in its acquisition strategies as well as providing information on potential business opportunities.

“The FY23 Team Redstone APBI is a large event with multiple speakers from various Team Redstone organizations,” Baskins said. “Industry is provided with an early vision of planned and potential government acquisition actions over the next several years. This aids industry efforts in making informed business decisions about which acquisitions to pursue and determine the best strategy for developing winning proposals resulting in contracts that meet both parties’ goals.

“This is a win-win for government and industry,” she added. “USASMDC leverages this opportunity with industry to collaborate, network and explore prospects for strategic partnerships. USASMDC’s participation in the APBI will continue to ensure our success in supporting the warfighter.”

Baskins said this year’s theme of “Government - Industry Partnerships to Sustain Modernization and Readiness Beyond 2030” is appropriate considering the state of world affairs and current conflicts and future threats.

She said the theme aligns nicely with USASMDC’s complex mission to develop and provide current and future global space, missile defense and high-altitude capabilities to the Army, joint force, allies and partners to enable multi-domain combat effects; enhance deterrence, assurance and detection of strategic attacks; and protect the nation.

De Fatta shared items of interest to industry including a discussion on

“Why and How of Army Space” and how USASMDC’s mission tightly fits into that arena. He also discussed the Technical Center’s Reagan Test Site developmental and operational testing and space operations activities.

“Industry may be particularly interested to hear the discussion on near-term and potential long-term business opportunities,” Baskins said.

Mary Birdsong, USASMDC Office of Small Business Programs director, presented separately during the Small Business segment, which also includes a match making session to facilitate large and small businesses teaming opportunities. Also, Chris Wood, USASMDC Office of the Staff Judge Advocate acquisition attorney, participated on a Procurement Administrative Lead Time panel discussion to discuss the revised PALT goals recently issued.

“I can’t talk about industry exchanges without mentioning SMDC’s own virtual communication tool, the Virtual Industry Exchange/Forecast Industry Report the command launched three years ago,” Baskins said.

The VIE/FIR is posted on the the command’s public website quarterly at It provides up-to-date information on requirements across the command. USASMDC uses this platform and numerous other venues such as APBI and Army Contracting Command-Redstone PALT sessions to demonstrate its continued commitment for meaningful exchanges and to provide industry with potential opportunities as early as possible for their planning purposes.