News & Events

Government Procurement Program Addresses Ethical Dilemmas in the Global Defense Industry

GW Law's Government Procurement Law Program co-hosted an event with the Defense Industry Initiative on Business Ethics Conduct (DII) to celebrate the publication of a new Oxford University Press book, Ethical Dilemmas in the Global Defense Industry. The book and event are the culmination of several years of innovative research spurred by a 2015 conference hosted by Professor Claire Finkelstein, Director of the University of Pennsylvania’s Center for Ethics and the Rule of Law, where many of the authors first convened to discuss salient issues in ethics and compliance. Several GW Law faculty members contributed chapters to the book, including Jeffrey & Martha Kohn Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs; Nash & Cibinic Professor of Government Procurement Law Steven L. Schooner, Associate Dean for Government Procurement Law Studies; Government Contracts Advisory Council Distinguished Professorial Lecturer in Government Contracts Law, Practice & Policy Jessica Tillipman, Lynn David Research Professor in Government Procurement Law Christopher R. Yukins, and Professorial Lecturer in Law, Dan Schoeni, who also co-edited the book. 

DII was a natural partner for this event, given their mission to promote the “advancement of a culture of ethical conduct in every company that provides products and services through government contracting.” Noting the parallels between the Ethical Dilemmas book and DII’s advancement of ethical standards in the defense industry, DII Working Group Chair, Kim Kaminski (BAE Systems) explained, “Ethical Dilemmas in the Global Defense Industry highlights the need for transparency, accountability, and responsible decision-making. The Defense Industry Initiative serves as a beacon for fostering those principles and promoting the highest standards of ethical behavior amongst defense contractors.”

“We were honored to partner with DII for this important event,” said Dean Tillipman. “DII plays a critical role in elevating ethics and compliance best practices for the entire defense industry, so it was great to work together on an event dedicated to ethics issues impacting our field.”

Read full article from George Washington Law School.

Greater San Antonio Ethics & Compliance Roundtable (GSAECR)

The Greater San Antonio Roundtable Symposium was held on October 27th.  Ellen Martin, former DII Chair, and Kim Kaminski, DII Vice Chair, gave the presentation  “What Every E&C Professional Needs to Know About the Defense Industry Initiative (DII)".  The mission of the Greater San Antonio Ethics & Compliance Roundtable (GSAECR) is to promote compliance and high ethical standards through collaboration and professional development. Members are engaged in ethics and compliance-related activities in business, non-profit, governmental, academic, and other sectors. 

The presentation focused on the benefits and resources that are available from the Defense Industry Initiative.  The two organizations have a similar focus in promoting high ethics standards.  San Antonio is a hub of military companies and DII is a natural fit.

DII Member Connect Call Recap

October 24, 2022 11:00am-12:30pm
17 Total attendees (4 hosts + 13 members)

To encourage and faciliate best practice sharing, twice annually, DII hosts a Member Connect call to spotlight DII members and their challenges. On October 24, Tom McDaniel (L3Harris Technologies and DII Working Group member) hosted Vicki Settle (Raytheon) and Terry Bridges (Georgia Tech Research Institute). The primary topics of discussion were Program Effectiveness (convincing senior leadership that E&C program is effective and adds value to the organization) and Program Resources (ensuring senior leadership understands and values necessary resources that the E&C program requires to guarantee effectiveness). Thanks to those who attended and contributed to the discussion by sharing thoughts, ideas, and experiences.

Next DII Member Connect call: April 2023

Q1 Webinar Recap: Enhancing Small Business Ethics and Compliance Efforts

On March 24, 2022, DII hosted a webinar that featured a wide-range of topics: (1) the global shift in anti-corruption and compliance with increased emphasis on Foreign Corrupt Practices Act violations; (2) other relevant laws the Government uses to enforce compliance such as the civil False Claims Act and Suspension/Debarment; (3) the risk of compliance failures in small business, including risk to primes and the Government; and (4) compliance challenges for small to medium-sized companies. The webinar also covered the basics of a comprehensive compliance program including a code of conduct and risk-tailored compliance policies and procedures, as well as robust internal controls and oversight. Panelists also explored actionable ways for small businesses to enhance ethics and compliance, including use of third-party resources and other best practices, as well as a discussion on policy-oriented changes to increase Government involvement that could meaningfully impact the compliance landscape for small businesses.

Panelists included:
Sam Le
Office of Policy Planning and Liaison, Office of Government Contracting and Business Development - U.S. Small Business Administration

Elizabeth Sullivan

President - Madison Services Group

Jessica Tillipman

Assistant Dean for Government Procurement Law Studies; Government Contracts Advisory Council Professorial Lecturer in Government Contracts Law, Practice & Policy - George Washington University Law School

Nikki Williams
VP of Compliance and Deputy General Counsel - ADS, Inc.

Teddie Arnold - Moderator
Partner - Seyfarth LLC

A recording of the webinar can be accessed on the All Member Forum community within MemberConnect.

DII Participates on Panel for ABA Debarment & Suspension Committee

Michele Brown, Chief Ethics and Compliance Officer and Deputy General Counsel at Leidos, represented DII as the Vice-Chair of the Working Group on a panel for the ABA Debarment & Suspension Committee on January 21, 2021 on “Key Considerations for Contractor Ethics & Compliance Programs.” The panel included Derek Santos, Deputy General Counsel (Contractor Responsibility and Conflict Resolution), Suspending & Debarring Official for the Air Force, and Kerry Hotopp, Assistant General Counsel (Acquisition Integrity), Suspending & Debarring Official for the Navy, and was moderated by Mike Wagner, a Partner at Covington and Co-Chair of the Committee. The robust discussion covered a range of topics, including why it is important to have a well-developed and effective program in the context of a present responsibility determination, the most challenging elements of a program to get right, the integration of procedures for evaluating and making mandatory disclosures, how to incentivize ethical behavior, and best practices for keeping the program fresh and current.

DII Welcomes Its Newest Members

ABL Space Systems
Cambridge International Systems Inc.
Microsoft Corporation
Perspecta Inc.
Rhea Space Activity LLC

4th Quarter 2020 Best Practices Webinar Recap

DII held a successful 4th Quarter webinar on December 8, 2020 on the topic of the Department of Justice’s Updated Guidance on Corporate Compliance Programs on the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). The speakers were Matthew (Matt) Miner (Morgan Lewis, Partner) and Daniel (Dan) Kahn (Department of Justice Criminal Division, Head of Fraud Section). Matt and Dan gave a brief overview of the FCPA and then dove into a robust discussion and question and answer session led by the webinar facilitator and Working Group member, Cecilia Showalter (Aerojet Rocketdyne).

3rd Quarter 2020 Best Practices Webinar Recap

DII held a successful 3rd Quarter webinar on September 22, 2020 on the topic of Diversity and Inclusion E_orts in the Defense Industry as Impacted by 2020. The speakers were Josef Allen (GE Aviation, Chief Diversity O_cer), Suzanne Raheb (Lockheed Martin Corporation, Corporate Supplier Diversity Leader), Laura Maechtlen (Seyfarth Shaw LLP, Chair of Seyfarth Shaw’s Labor & Employment Department and Co-Chair of National Diversity & Inclusion Action Team). Josef, Suzanne and Laura led a robust discussion on the actions their organizations have been taking in 2020 as it relates to diversity and inclusion.

Vice Chair Announcement

In September 2019, the Defense Industry Initiative (DII) Steering Committee amended its charter to add Vice Chair positions to the DII Steering Committee and Working Group. DII is proud to announce that Roger Krone, CEO of Leidos, has accepted the position of Vice Chair of the Steering Committee, effective June 15 2020. Roger will be supported by Michele Brown, Leidos SVP, Chief Ethics & Compliance Officer and Deputy General Counsel, as the Vice Chair of the Working Group.

In June 2021, Roger will assume the role of Chair for the DII Steering Committee, supported by Michele as the Chair of the DII Working Group. Leidos has been an active member of DII since 1987. We thank Roger and Michele for their dedication to the organization and industry and look forward to DII’s continued growth and impact over the next year.

COVID-19 Members-Only Call Series

On May 28, 2020, DII hosted the first call of a series geared towards sharing best practices and ideas on how our industry is navigating the many nuances we have been facing as a result of the global pandemic. The call was facilitated by Working Group members Joy Hayes (Boeing), Trish Olson (Raytheon Technologies), Cris Potter (SAIC), and Matthew Griggs, GE Aviation. The topics discussed, generally, included Ethics & Compliance issues surrounding cyber risk, procurement risk, privacy and data analytics.

The second call was hosted on June 19 from 11 AM - 12 PM. The call was facilitated by Working Group members Joy Hayes (Boeing), Blair Marks (Lockheed Martin), Shauna Brookshier (SAIC), and Kim Kaminski (BAE). The topics discussed, generally, included considering permanent telework, return from telework, and risk with engagement challenges.

2nd Quarter Best Practices Webinar

DII held a successful 2nd Quarter webinar on May 27, 2020 on the topic of the Cybersecurity Maturity Model. Our presenters were Charles “Chuck” Neff¬ of Newport News Shipbuilding and Huntington Ingalls Industries, Inc. and Tracy Scroggins of United Launch Alliance. There were 78 attendees with 51 companies represented.

Chuck and Tracy provided an overview of the new Department of Defense unified cybersecurity standards for acquisitions to help protect controlled unclassified information. Included in their presentation was a discussion of the requirements, examples that have led up the requirements, the actions being taken by companies with examples from both the prime contractor and the supplier perspective and how the ethics and compliance group is supporting the cybersecurity requirement effort.

Federal Publications Five-Part Webinar Series: Effective Ethics Programs for Suppliers

DII recently conducted a five part webinar series with Federal Publications entitled “E_ective Ethics Programs for Suppliers” which was based on Lockheed Martin’s materials of the same topic. The webinars took place on April 7th, 15th, 28th, May 5th and May 12th.

In total, over 200 attendees participated. Over 29 states, District of Columbia, New Delhi, India were represented. The topics covered were:
(1) Why You Need An Ethics Program
(2) Setting Up An Ethics Program
(3) Developing Policies, Procedures and Codes of Conduct to Mitigate Risks
(4) Training and Communication On Ethics and Assessing Your Ethics Program
(5) Enabling Employees to Speak Up and Addressing Issues Raised

A special thanks to our speakers David Gebler of Lockheed Martin, J.B. Wakefield of G.E., Blair Marks of Lockheed Martin, Michael Miller of Health Net Federal Services, Shauna Brookshire of SAIC and Cecilia Showalter of Aerojet-Rocketdyne. We would also like to thank Federal Publications for co-sponsoring and advertising this webinar series.

Recordings of the webinar series can be accessed via the following link:

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DII hosts a joint DOD Ethics Office and DII Brown Bag lunch meeting

DII and the Government Interagency Ethics Council hosted a joint lunch and learn on Tips on How to Make Your Ethics Program More Effective on April 25, 2019 at the Boeing offices in Washington, D.C. There was a panel and table top discussions on the topics of benchmarking and communication.

DII hosts a successful Best Practice Forum

DII members from over 21 companies came together for a 2 day conference on June 13th and 14th, 2019, to discuss best practices in the industry. The conference was attended by approximately 250 Ethics and Compliance Professionals. In addition to 2 distinguished keynote speakers there were 8 U.S. government speakers who presented at the conference.

DII Working Group member quoted in industry article

Jamal Ahmed, the Vice President, Internal Audit at Day & Zimmerman (and a DII Working Group Member) was recently quoted in an article by Carl R. Oliver in the September/October 20198 Ethikos article entitled "The Goldilocks Principle and the Proper HERO: Perspective on the ethics and compliance mission." HERO stands for "High Reliability Organization." The article discusses approaches to ethics that seek to find the spot between "to hard" and "to easy." Hence the reference to Goldilocks. Mr. Ahmed discusses his goal of "doing the right thing in everything we do" and that "business ethics is more than following the rules; it is about doing the right thing regardless of the rules." The article can be read in full at the link provided below.

News Briefs

DII meets with Navy Suspension and Debarment Officials
On August 30, 2018, a delegation from DII met with the Navy Suspension and Debarment Official and his staff to discuss DII and to listen to Navy concerns about contractors' compliance programs.

DII Meets with Navy and Air Force Ethics counsel
On October 24, 2018, a delegation from DII met with Air Force and Navy Ethics counsel to discuss DII and issues relating to post-employment restrictions

DII Comments on Transparency International's Proposed 2019 Defense Company Index and Evaluation
On November 2, 2018, DII submitted comments to Transparency International on TII's proposed 2019 Defense Company Index and Evaluation process.

DII Attends APTAC Conference
On November 12-14, 2018, DII attended the Association of Procurement Technical Assistance Centers fall meeting in Washington, D.C. The APTAC organization represents the companies that run technical assistance centers for the SBA around the country to help small businesses learn how to comply with the many requirements in a government contract. As part of that conference, DII was included in the APTAC fall magazine. See page 6 of the attachment. Thanks to all that attended

DII Attends NACA Conference
On November 14, 2018, DII presented an hour long session at the Native American Contractors Association. NACA is focused on protecting and enhancing opportunities for Native government contractors and being the voice of Native 8(a) companies in Washington, D.C. Thanks to all that attended.

DII to Meet with Air Force Suspension and Debarment Official
On December 13, 2018, DII will meet with the Air Force Suspension and Debarment official to discuss DII and to listen to Air Force concerns about contractor compliance programs.

DII participates in NCMA conference

July 22-24 2018, Cleveland, Ohio

NCMA.jpgIn an attempt to expand engagement with government stakeholders and 3rd party organizations, the DII for the second year was an exhibitor at this year’s National Contract Management Association (NCMA) conference, called World Congress, held July 22-24 in Cleveland, Ohio.

The NCMA World Congress is the largest educational event for contract management, procurement, and acquisition professionals which was attended by over 2,000 individuals this year from government (federal, state, and local), industry, and commercial business.

Tom McDaniel from Harris Corporation, Kim Kaminski from BAE Systems, and DII administrator Don Featherstun from Seyfarth Shaw shared DII’s compelling mission to attendees.

To learn more about how your company can implement and continually improve its ethics and compliance program, visit the Membership page.

Industry Expert says that DII "has made a difference"

DII was recently held out as an example for how other industries can approach ethics and compliance. The following article suggest DII’s approach for Silicon Valley. The final conclusion is that efforts like DII “make a difference.”

Read the complete article (Quartz at Work)