‘Procurement innovator’ Bob Welch dies

The federal acquisition community is mourning the loss of Bob Welch, a retired 30-year-plus government employee and a current executive with ASI Government.

During his federal service, Welch served as the senior procurement executive for the departments of Commerce and Treasury, chief of the procurement policy division at the Department of Agriculture and as a contracting officer for the Department of the Navy.

Welch died March 31 after being on a ventilator for the past four months.

After retiring from government in 2000, Welch joined Acquisition Solutions Inc. as a partner and continued to be an active member of the federal community.

Several long-time friends and colleagues shared thoughts about Welch, which Federal News Radio received via email:

“Always recognized the value of government-contractor alignment and cooperation.”

“Knew the Federal Acquisition Regulations well and used it as an enabler in his acquisition responsibilities.”

“A friend, a good friend at that and one that will be missed by many.”

“A true gentleman, close to many, even closer to many.”

The viewing will be April 5, from 2 p.m.-to-4 p.m. and 6 p.m.-to-8 p.m., at George Kalas Funeral Home in Edgewater, Maryland. The funeral service will be April 6, at 11 a.m., at St. Anne’s Episcopal Church in Annapolis, Maryland.

“Bob’s boldness and creativity brought him to join ASI’s fearless founders all those years ago. Together, they helped shape a generation of acquisition visionaries, and their legacy is our future. Bob will be missed terribly,” said Dr. Timothy Cooke, ASI’s president and CEO, in a statement.

During his government career, Welch led the effort to develop a new type of small business contract, called the Commerce Information Technology Solutions (COMMITS) Program. It was a governmentwide acquisition contract (GWAC) limited to small, small disadvantaged, women-owned, and 8(a) businesses.

He also led the Procurement Measurement Action Team (PMAT), which was the first application of the Balanced Scorecard in federal procurement, and introduced the concept of using a credit card for federal buying and developed a pilot test which became an approved governmentwide program.

“Bob was an innovator who loved to push acquisition and procurement professionals to find new and better ways to buy and to achieve greater mission value from contracts,” said Anne Reed, ASI’s former president and CEO and current Chairman of the Board, in a release. “The well-known COMMITS contract at the Commerce Department was one of his best known envelope-pushing achievements. Bob was a tremendous person, and our hearts ache today.”

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