By Marion C. Blakey - In a few short days the supercommittee will release their long-anticipated recommendations on how to meet objectives outlined in the Budget Control Act. With only four public hearings, most of the work of the supercommittee has been behind closed doors with little to let us know their progress beyond an occasional comment or trying-to-be upbeat quip from one of the members.
In testimony before the House Armed Services Committee, AIA's Vice President for National Security Fred Downey identified trends that could result in atrophying the industry's ability to deliver critical militarily-unique systems. This could lead to a reduction in capability that our troops and the American people have come to expect.
A new economic study projects more than a million job losses in the aerospace and defense industry if the Joint Committee on Deficit Reduction cannot balance the budget by December 23, as prescribed by the Budget Control Act. The analysis was conducted on behalf of AIA by Dr. Stephen S. Fuller, Dwight Schar Faculty Chair, University Professor and Director of the Center for Regional Analysis at George Mason University and Economic Modeling Specialists Inc.
The Joint STARS Total System Support Responsibility team and the Apache Sensors and Navy Performance-Based Logistics teams received the 7th annual awards for excellence in Performance-based Logistics at AIA's Fall Product Support Conference Oct. 25.
Aerospace and defense industry representatives from around the world participated in the second annual International Forum on Business Ethical Conduct (IFBEC) conference in Landsdowne, Va., last month. The IFBEC provides an opportunity to exchange information on ethics best practices and global trends among industry participants and to identify areas of commonality.
With Defense Department budget concerns on the front burner for AIA, the association's Vice President for Space, Frank Slazer, participated in the first Hosted Payload Summit on October 4 in Washington, D.C., discussing how this area could play a potential role in a budget-constrained environment.
The aerospace industry is very involved in developing programs to interest students in engineering courses and careers. AIA's own Team America Rocketry Challenge as well as FIRST Robotics and Project Lead the Way come to mind. Perhaps somewhat less known are programs recently established to excite students' interest and begin to prepare them for careers in cybersecurity.
South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley gave the keynote address at the annual International Council conference October 27. The three-day conference, attended by more than 70 aerospace and defense representatives, kicked off with a tour of the 787 manufacturing facility in Charleston arranged by The Boeing Company. Conference participants met with leaders from the departments of State, Defense and Commerce in addition to representatives from AIA's overseas counterpart associations and other leading authorities on defense and commercial trade markets.
Registration for the Fall Board of Governors Meeting has officially broken all records. We are going to have a great meeting on November 15-17 in Scottsdale, Ariz., and we're looking forward to seeing you there.
AIA was a proud sponsor of the U.S. Celebration of World Standards Day on October 13. World Standards Day is an annual event recognizing the beginning of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) in 1946. This event brings together industry, government and standards developing organizations (SDOs) to raise awareness of the importance of standards and standardization activities to the global economy.