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News | Oct. 21, 2016

My DCMA: DeVonn Fray, administrative contracting officer

By Stephen Hickok DCMA Public Affairs

My DCMA showcases the Defense Contract Management Agency's experienced and diverse workforce and highlights what being a part of the national defense team means to them. Today we meet DeVonn Fray.

My name is DeVonn J. Fray and this is My DCMA.

I am an administrative contracting officer and contingency response force representative at DCMA Lockheed Martin Marietta. 

My job duties include what most ACO’s do, closing out contracts and ensuring contractors are in line with the terms and conditions of the contract. However, at my contract management office, my team and I have the unique responsibility of working with undefinitized contract orders. Sometimes final costs for the services needed to repair aircraft can’t be quoted up front. Collaborating with other DCMA sections, we make sure the contractor’s labor hours, work performed and materials needed are fair and reasonable. Additionally, within our P-3, C-5 and C-130 aircraft programs here at the plant, there are estimating factors in which we have been given unique authority to negotiate rates. This is considered rare because negotiating these rates typically rests with the divisional ACO.

As a CRF, I also get to see the other side of DCMA. Working with leaders of the Army Contingency Contracting Administration Service as DCMA’s lead ACO, I help break down, distribute, and monitor workload as well as make sure new contracting personnel are trained for the contingency environment. Senior leader engagement and customer education are also critical tasks within my realm of responsibility that help in adding to mission success.

I have been a part of the DCMA team for three years. Prior to my arrival at DCMA, I worked side by side with my military colleagues performing cradle-to-grave contracting at the Air Force District of Washington. The experience was very beneficial because it exposed me to various types of contracting as well as multiple avenues in which I can provide a higher quality of efficient and effective service. My experience in D.C. helped me become more well-rounded as a contracting business advisor. More importantly, it gave me my first heart-felt introduction to the impact civil servants have ensuring our military family can perform their job safeguarding our freedom and rights. Working at AFDW set the stage for my desire to deploy alongside our war-fighting heroes in order to gain an understanding of what they experience day to day.  

I like working at DCMA because it gives me the opportunity to give back as well as support those in harm’s way. When you wake up in the morning, you want to feel like you make a difference. During my deployments I received a lot of satisfaction seeing the impact DCMA-administered contracts provided our soldiers. The feeling one gets in knowing you are contributing positively to the sacrifices others have made for the greater good of society is unlike any other. Being a government civilian is something I take pride in, allowing me to look in the mirror knowing I make a difference. I definitely don’t take my position or experiences for granted.

I am the independent eyes and ears for the Department of Defense because I support the troops through contract administration and oversight of contractors. What we do at DCMA really makes a difference and I can see it. Working on both the front line and on the factory floor, I get to work alongside our troops determining their needs as well as alongside our contractors ensuring they provide the right services and equipment our military members need to accomplish the mission. I take pride in providing actionable acquisition insight to the DoD by truly understanding what our soldiers need as well as letting them know we understand what they’re going through.

A lot of the requests we see are for immediate needs. Being fortunate enough to have been deployed, I am able to speak the same language as our troops and to share my experiences, which helps motivate our team — ultimately providing better customer service to those who deserve it.

In a different way, on the factory floor, there is a more technical aspect and the same user interaction isn’t there. However, by making sure aircraft are able to perform correctly, we help service members accomplish the mission and come home safe. The insight we supply ensures contracts and contractors provide what’s best for our service members while also protecting taxpayer dollars.

DCMA personnel are important to America’s warfighters because we make sure the equipment or services they have perform when needed most. There’s nothing better than seeing a smile on a soldier’s face or accepting a hug from one of our deployed heroes for receiving the products or services so many of us take for granted stateside. That is one of the greatest parts of working for DCMA.