Bob Brewin

Editor at Large Bob Brewin joined Government Executive in April 2007, bringing with him more than 20 years of experience as a journalist focusing on defense issues and technology. Bob covers the world of defense and information technology for Nextgov, and is the author of the “What’s Brewin” blog.
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From Defense launches campaign and Web site to destigmatize traumatic stress

May 26, 2009 The Defense Department launched a multimedia campaign that includes a new Web site designed to reduce the stigma that combat veterans and their families say they feel when seeking mental health care. Read the full story on

Memorial Day, Brasso, JPAC and Comrades

May 22, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Polishing the Brass Army Sgt. Caleb Barrieau plans to honor on Monday -- Memorial Day -- the 58,195 fallen troops whose names are inscribed on the Vietnam Memorial the same way he has every weekend for the past nine weeks - with a can of Brasso and a polishing rag....

Langston or Gilligan for Defense CIO

May 22, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow I'm picking up hints that Dr. Marv Langston, appointed the Navy's first chief information officer in 1997 and John Gilligan, who served as Air Force CIO from 2000-2005, are candidates for the Defense Department CIO slot, vacant since John Grimes left the job last month. Langston, considered the father of...

Senate directs Defense to track soldiers injured by explosions

May 22, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The Senate directed the Defense Department on Thursday to track soldiers' injuries caused by bombs such as improvised explosive devices so it can identify those who may develop complications years after the attack, including psychological disorders. The Army's top doctor, Lt. Gen. Eric Schoomaker, has repeatedly called injuries caused by...

Delayed launches of communications satellites threatens troops

May 21, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow New communication satellites needed to support U.S. forces deployed globally, including combat troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, continue to experience delays, top Defense Department and Government Accountability Office officials told lawmakers at a Senate hearing on May 20. Programs behind schedule include the Advanced Extremely High Frequency system, which Lockheed...

Grimes Has Left the Building . . .

May 20, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow . . . and the Obama administration hasn't yet named a replacement for him as assistant secretary of Defense for networks and information integration - in other words, the chief information officer. My well-placed sources say they have no idea of a likely candidate, with the exception of retired Rear...

. . . But Baker IS in the Building . . .

May 20, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow . . . after being sworn in today as the new assistant secretary for information and technology and chief information officer at the Veterans Affairs Department headquarters on Vermont Avenue. He will need to tackle a range of problems, including the outsourcing of numerous VA IT development projects to the...

RFID Tracking the DIA Folks

May 19, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Before employees who labor away in the Darth Vader building at Bolling Air Force Base in Washington get too excited, the Defense Intelligence Agency is looking to use Radio Frequency Identification chips to track its personnel -- in emergency situations ONLY, not every minute of their lives. DIA wants a...

Seeking Athena-like Wisdom

May 19, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The intelligence community's research outfit, the Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA), wants to hear from companies that can do work on its Top Secret Athena program, which focuses on Computer Network Operations. Since Athena is classified Top Secret, it's hard to divine its goals, but a Google search yields...

HERBB's Not Here

May 18, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow I've spent the past two work days attempting -- to no avail -- to access documents on an upcoming procurement on the Hanscom [Mass.] Air Force Base Electronic Request for Proposals Bulletin Board, known as HERBB, which the Air Force Electronic Systems Center operates. Repeated attempts to access HERBB produced...

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