Hammer Award
National Partnership for Reinventing Government

Hammer Award Highlights

January-February 1999

Since 1994, more than 1,250 teams of government reinventors have received a $6 hammer, a ribbon, and a note from Vice President Gore, all in an aluminum frame.

The Hammer Award is the Vice President's tribute to teams of federal reinventors and their partners in state and local government and the private sector. The award recognizes them for using reinvention principles to create a government that works better, costs less, and delivers results the American people care about.

Congratulations to the following Hammer Award winners. The first are those awards yet to be presented in February, followed by recent winners.

February 16

Who: Department of Defense - F-22 OPS (Operations) online Development Team

Results: This team developed computer databases and decision based outputs that improve flight operation management, simplify paperwork requirements, and eliminate human error. These efficiencies reduced local staffing from eight to two.

POC: Lois Douglas (703) 697-9708
Where: Edwards AFB, CA
Presenter: Brigadier General Richard Reynolds

February 17

Who: Department of Commerce - Bureau of Census - Small Area Income and Poverty Estimates Program

Results:This team used counts of people in poverty from the 1990 census, current surveys, and more recent administrative records to identify the poorer school districts. These estimates, approved by the National Academy of Sciences, will redistribute $643 million dollars, of the $8 billion dollars available, into needier school districts.

POC: Janet Beck (301) 457-3152
Where: Suitland, MD
Presenter: Bob Stone

February 18

Who: General Services Administration - DC Department of Corrections (Industries Division) -- Intergovernmental License Plate Automation Team

Results: The General Services Administration, Office of Governmentwide Policy, teamed with the District of Columbia, Department of Corrections (Industries Division), to streamline the ordering and record keeping processes associated with ordering Federal license plates. This collaborative effort resulted in the elimination of 62 different ordering forms in favor of one, and the creation of an electronic database to take the place of manual logs. Because of these changes, the time to process an order for license plates was reduced from an estimated 5 hours to 2.5 minutes. This improved efficiency reduced the cost of processing an order from $52.28 to just $0.71. This was the first automation effort of this process since the facility first started making Federal license plates in 1933.

POC: Eleni Martin (202) 501-1030
Where: Washington, DC
Presenter: Cherie Stallman

February 19

Who: Department of Defense--The Fundamental Skills Training Project Team, Brooks Air Force Base

Results: An 11-member team developed an Internet-based version of the Fundamental Skills Training Tutors for writing. Earlier intranet-based tutors for math, writing, and science are now being used by several Department of Labor Job Corps centers and 40 public schools.

Where:Alamo Federal Executive Board Breakfast at the Club on Brooks Air Force Base
POC: Dr. Kurt Steuck, (210) 536-3844
Presenter: Gen. John Jernigan, 311th Human Systems Wing Commander

February 19

Who: Department of Veterans Affairs - Veterans Village of Tampa Bay

Results: The Tampa Bay team provided support to a non-profit community agency, local support groups, correctional work crews, and homeless veterans to renovate a village structure, where the homeless veterans will live. This team supports the veterans, develops working skills, runs savings programs, and ultimately helps each veteran to re-establish their independence.

POC: Carstine Thompson (202) 273-5071
Where: Tampa, FL
Presenter: Robert Roswell, MD

February 19

Who: Department of the Interior - Bureau of Indian Affairs - New School Construction Reengineering Laboratory Team

Results: This team reduced the time it takes to plan, design, and construct new elementary schools from six years to three. Building faster saves $3 to 3.5 million dollars in inflation costs and gets the schools where they're needed in half the time.

POC: Sylvia McCarney (202) 208-1818
Where: Albuquerque, NM
Presenter: Assistant Secretaries John Berry and Kevin Gover

February 23

Who: Department of Defense - Strategic Planning Project Team and Akutan Naval Station Team

Results: These teams planned how to clean up pollution and then cleaned up, saving an estimated $9 million dollars. The planning team grouped site work geographically and saved millions in relocation costs. The Akutan team cleaned up primary contamination sources first, combined investigation and clean up steps, emphasized clean up over documentation, and worked as a community team. The Total Environmental Restoration Contract approach eliminated 5 years of contamination risk, that the Alaskan people care about.

POC: Lois Douglas (703) 697-9708
Where: Anchorage, Alaska
Presenter: Lisa Mallory

February 24

Who: General Services Administration - Federal Security Infrastructure Team

Results: This team did the Federal Telephone Contract (FTS-2001) without paper. By doing everything electronically it literally avoided tons of paperwork costing around $1.5 million dollars. To do this, they built a secure electronic system by partnering with commercial suppliers and worked with the potential vendors to make it work.

POC: Judith Spencer (202) 708-5600
Where: Washington D.C.
Presenter: To be announced

January 28

Who: Department of Defense - Office of the Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Environmental Security -Center for Archaeological Curation

Results: This team developed a network of people who will care for these national historic treasures. This network of partners centrally identified the treasures, aligned resources to keep them preserved, made the collections of artifacts more available to the public, and reduced the overall costs by $5 million dollars.

POC: Lois Douglas (703) 697-9708
Where: St. Louis, MO
Presenter: Major General Phillip R. Anderson

January 28

Who: Department of Defense - Advanced Tomahawk Weapons Control System Keyport Team

Results: By using commercially available components, new design tools, commercial design support, expediting small purchases, using vendor maintenance support, and sharing resources for testing this team cut development time, improved control of missile launches, and saved $9.4 million dollars.

POC: Lois Douglas (703) 697-9708
Where: Keyport Washington
Presenter: Dr. Buchanan

January 29

Who: Health & Human Services - Food & Drug Administration - Interstate Travel Program Team

Results: This team developed a way for Boeing personnel to inspect and certify installation of galleys on their airplanes. By defining inspection requirements and training Boeing employees, this team eliminated 350 hours annually, improved the quality of oversight, and streamlined the overall process.

POC: Audrey Borja (301) 827-4225
Marie Urban (510) 6373960 ext. 17
Where: Turwilla, WA
Presenter: Marie Urban

January 29

Who: Department of Transportation - The Maritime Fire and Safety Association (MFSA)

Results: This federal/state/local, public, and private partnership improved safety, properties, and the environment along the Columbia and Willamette Rivers. To accomplish their numerous milestone improvements they pool emergency equipment and training capabilities in a pro-active and preventative manner.

POC: Liz Hoefer (202) 366-6610
Where: Portland, OR
Presenter: Rear Admiral Paul Blayney

February 1

Who: Department of Defense - Aircraft Logistics Management Division, (ALMD)/Directorate of Logistics (DOL)

Results: This team implemented cost reduction innovations in the purchase of aircraft repair parts that save $1 million per month and helped the Center execute 98% or its mission. This was the highest execution rate ever recorded.

POC: Lois Douglas (703) 697-9708
Where: Ft. Rucker, Al
Presenter: General John Abrams

February 2

Who: Department of Defense - U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Communications Section, Information Management Office

Results: This team designed a communication system that reduced 350 circuits by sharing available lines. By investing $200,000 in digital telephony they will save over $1 million dollars in equipment lifetime savings. They switched systems without adversely affecting service.

POC: Lois Douglas (703) 697-9708
Where: Pittsburgh, PA

February 3

Who: Department of Veterans Affairs - Two Teams Laboratory Expert System (LES) Audiology Productivity Process Action Team (PAT)

Results: The LES team developed computer software that screens costly laboratory testing requirements by using sound logic provided by the Medical Center's physicians and laboratory chemists. This improves service to the veterans, avoids wasted patient time, saves 5-8% in laboratory costs ($4 million if applied VA wide), and allows the VA to "Do more with LES."

The Audiology Productivity PAT redefined the patient reporting process which saves each patient 20 minutes, increased the clinic's productivity by 19.6%, improved the quality of audiologist time with veterans, and allowed transfer of reports to referring physicians during the visit.

POC: Carstine Thompson (202) 273-5071
Where: Syracuse, NY
Presenter: Philip P. Thomas

February 5

Who: Department of Veterans Affairs - The Insurance Awards Data Entry (ADE) Team

Results: This team developed a software program that streamlined the issuance of life insurance awards to families of deceased veterans. The reduced processing time (1 days) enhanced service to the families and reduced $800,000 in operating costs.

POC: Carstine Thompson (202) 273-5071
Where: Philadelphia. PA
Presenter: Nora Egan

February 5

Who: Department of Defense - Acoustics Rapid Commercial Off the Shelf (COTS) Insertion Program (A-RCI)

Results: This team used commercially available acoustically compliant products that include MultiPurpose Processors (MPP) and Middleware to insert new technology and make the submarine systems easier to maintain. While improving systems 200% they reduced procurement costs by $100 million dollars.

POC:Lois Douglas (703) 697-9708
Where: Arlington, VA
Presenter: Cherie Stallman

For More Information

Find out more about Hammer Awards at Please contact Denise Clyburn at, if you have questions.

Hammer Award list compiled by Lee Wexel at (202) 694-0036 or Please send corrections to him.

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