Gregory (Greg) L. Giddens

GovConRx Advisor
Partner, Potomac Ridge Consulting

Greg Giddens is a senior executive with over 35 years of experience in engineering, management, leadership, procurement, and program management with 16 years as a member of the Senior Executive Service. He served as the Principal Executive Director for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Office of Modernization, as Chief Acquisition Officer (CAO) for the Department, and also as the Principal Executive Director for the Office of Acquisition, Logistics and Construction at VA. Greg has considerable experience establishing effective relationships with stakeholders across a broad spectrum including the White House, Cabinet Agencies, Congress, and the private sector. He is skilled in planning and execution including requirements development, acquisition planning, budgeting, and execution for large programs addressing enterprise goals and objectives.

As the Principal Executive Director for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Office of Modernization from April 2017 until his retirement in November 2017, Greg led the agency’s efforts to accomplish the Secretary’s overall modernization vision and to respond to the President’s Executive Order and OMB’s memo regarding reforming executive branch agencies. This effort includes streamlining activities and programs for direct, indirect, and shared services as well as addressing governance, decision making, and organizational redesign. The VA has over 370,000 employees and is dedicated to providing timely and quality service and benefits to our Nation’s 22M Veterans. 

Greg was appointed as the Chief Acquisition Officer (CAO) for the Department in April 2015 and also as the Principal Executive Director for the Office of Acquisition, Logistics and Construction at VA where he oversaw almost $20B in spend. He led the effort to transform the medical surgical supply chain and realized over $370M in cost avoidance in the first 18 months. He also implemented strategic sourcing solutions improving service delivery cycle times and obtaining better value. He also drove decision making to the lowest appropriate level to increase speed of action and accountability and established a VA-wide program management framework that supports the implementation of the Program Management Improvement and Accountability Act (PMIAA).

Greg previously served as the Executive Director of VA’s Office of Policy and Planning, Enterprise Program Management Office. He led the start-up of a new office working directly with the Deputy Secretary to facilitate the planning and execution of the Department’s 16 most critical initiatives. Greg developed an enterprise strategy to generate business-based IT requirements and streamline the procurement process to get contracts awarded. He also led the implementation of the strategy leading to the award of $800M of work - 98% of available funds. He also led the development and deployment of Lean Management principles across the VA for operational and support functions.

Prior to joining the VA, Greg served in several executive positions at the Department of Homeland Security. He was the executive in charge of all horizontal (fence, barriers, earthen) and vertical construction and facilities management work at Customs and Border Protection with a multi-billion-dollar portfolio. He standardized designs and procurement strategies and reduced cycle times by 25% and costs by 30%. He also piloted IT solutions along the US Mexican border in support of borer security efforts. At the Department level, he designed and implemented cross-agency and international efforts related to immigration and border security. 

At the United States Coast Guard, Greg served in executive positions in acquisition and program management as the Coast Guard was recapitalizing its surface and air fleet with a $15B plus program. This included replacing the engines on the HH-65 helicopter fleet, design and construction of several classes of surface vessels, and the development of an integrated C4ISR system.

Greg started his career in the Department of Defense working as an Electrical Engineer for the Air Force. He had series of more responsible assignments in the field and at the Pentagon moving from engineering to program management and leadership positions. His last AF assignment was as the deputy for the Air Force’s E-3 Sentry program, ensuring the availability of assets for current operations while deploying critical mission enhancements for the Airborne Warning and Control System aircraft. 

He was selected to be a member of the Senior Executive Service in 2000 and has received several awards including the Presidential Rank Award for Distinguished Executive in 2005 and Federal Computer Week’s top 100 IT Executives Federal 100 award in 2007 and 2017. In 2017, Greg was also selected as the recipient of the Public-Sector Partnership Award as part of the Greater Washington Government Contractor Awards, ACT-IAC’s Janice K. Mendenhall Spirit of Leadership Award, and the Coalition for Government Procurement’s Lifetime Acquisition Excellence Award. He is currently a member of National Contract Management Association’s (NCMA) Board of Advisors and is on ACT-IAC’s Executive Committee. In addition, he has attended and spoken at many leadership events including Harvard Business School, ACT-IAC’s Executive Leadership Conference, and the NCMA World Congress.

In January 2018, Greg Giddens started a consulting firm - Potomac Ridge Consulting, LLC - with Dave Grant, another GovConRx Advisory Board member. Potomac Ridge Consulting provides Acquisition, Program Management and Strategic guidance to firms across the federal spectrum.