Retiring SSG director hails AFITC

Robert Frye, executive director of the Standard Systems Group, said this year's AFITC was the biggest show ever

Robert Frye, executive director of the Standard Systems Group (SSG), said this year's Air Force Information Technology Conference in Montgomery, Ala., turned out to be the "biggest show ever" and a nice send-off before his retirement next week.

Frye, whose last day is Sept. 3, said he would be staying in Montgomery as an independent consultant to government contractors. He is being replaced by Frank Weber, a member of the Senior Executive Service and deputy director for logistics and business operations at Transportation Command, Scott Air Force Base, Ill.

With the economy struggling and "things as tight as they are in industry," Frye said he was surprised this year's AFITC was so big. The conference included more than 170 vendors, and companies went on waiting lists for booth space. He added that vendors especially like the show because it enables them to interact with the "young officers making the technical decisions."

Beginning with Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. John Jumper's opening address, this year's theme was "integration, integration, integration," Frye said, echoing the chief's message that "there's no time for an hourglass when you're trying to get a cursor on the target."

Frye, who has been SSG's executive director since 1995, is responsible for the 2,400-person organization that acquires, develops and maintains combat support information systems for Air Force and Defense Department components. SSG is responsible for $14 billion in contracts and more than 100 programs.

As the chief operating officer for the Information Services Activity Group — composed of SSG at the Gunter Annex in Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala., and the Materiel Systems Group at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio — Frye is responsible for the financial and technical performance of that business area. The combined value of business of these organizations is more than $520 million.

Under Frye's leadership, SSG led the way toward the demonstration of the Air Force Web portal that was built in less than 60 days and a secret portal that was put together in 65 hours after Sept. 11.

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