Former Office of Federal Procurement Policy Administrators Angela Styles and Joe Jordan discuss the nomination of Michael Wooten to the role, and what he should focus on if confirmed.
President Trump recently nominated a new administrator for the Office of Federal Procurement Policy. Michael Wooten will have to be confirmed by the Senate before he assumes the role. However, the office has gone for two and a half years without a permanent leader in place, which means that he will have to jump into a complicated acquisition environment. Angela Styles, former OFPP administrator and partner at Akin Gump, says that he’ll be fine if he surrounds himself with the right people. “It’s a tough balance. A lot of people want to just protect at all costs, other people want no rules and regulations. But… I think the most important piece, listening to the people who have been there for a long time. The career people really do have sage and wise advice about how to get from to A, to B, to C. Really listening and understanding what they’re saying is so important to getting the job done well” Joe Jordan, former OFPP administrator and CEO of Supplier.ai, says that even though the position is largely policy-based, Wooton will be grilled throughout the congressional approval process, and he should be ready to answer any question that comes his way. “I had 65 pages of questions from the hill asking me general biography-type stuff. ‘Why are you qualified to help oversee the policies and procedures letting out $400+ billion in federal contracts each year?‘ and also very deep, ‘How you do you feel about this exact issue?’ ‘Can you absolutely give us your word that you will go right on this issue?’ Next question, ‘Can you absolutely give us your word that you will go left on this issue?‘ You can’t answer both of those in the affirmative,” Jordan said. “You don’t guess… and you don’t play games with those types of things.”