Nickolas Guertin, nominee for assistant secretary of the Navy for research, development and acquisition, became the newest inductee into the 2023 Wash100 class of leaders who play a significant role in shaping the government contracting sector’s current and future environment.
During his March 15 nomination hearing, Guertin said he saw a need to update the Department of the Navy’s strategy to affordably acquire systems that would help U.S. sailors and Marines gain an advantage on the battlefield.
“I intend on collecting their intellect and enthusiasm to accelerate and streamline the delivery of innovation needed to provide an unparalleled warfighting advantage – at scale,” he told the Senate Armed Services Committee.
“To achieve these ends, we must take advantage of things like model-based engineering and digital threads, rapid hardware design along with modern and proven development practices for evolving software capabilities – in short to use new tools to advance our practice.”
Guertin has served as director of operational test and evaluation at the Department of Defense since December 2021. In that role, he advises the defense secretary on matters related to weapon systems assessment.
His office reported providing oversight of operational and live-fire test and evaluation efforts across 243 military acquisition programs in fiscal year 2022.
In a February 2022 report, Guertin and Vanderbilt University professor Douglas Schmidt jointly proposed six pathways to procure complex software-based capabilities that align with the DOD’s Adaptive Acquisition Framework.
“As the concept of [technical reference frameworks] gains traction and more systems are compelled to follow suit, the methods of integration, development testing, and operational testing will have to evolve as well,” they wrote in the report published by Carnegie Mellon University.
Guertin is a Navy Reserve engineering duty officer with four decades of military and civilian service experience in areas such as submarine operations, shipbuilding, weapons development and testing, systems engineering and defense acquisition.
Executive Mosaic congratulates Nickolas Guertin for his selection to receive the 2023 Wash100 award. Vote for your favorite awardees at the Wash100 site to support the GovCon ecosystem and executives that drive sector growth.