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Project on Government Oversight

Letter to Department of Defense, Inspector General regarding expansion of inquiry into former Air Force acquisition chief Darleen Druyun's conduct with Boeing

Related Content: C-17, Revolving Door
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September 4, 2003

Mr. Kevin Flanagan
Inspector General
Department of Defense
400 Army Navy Dr.
Arlington, VA 22202-4704

via facsimile (703) 604-8310

Dear Mr. Flanagan,

I am writing to request that you expand your inquiry into former Air Force acquisition chief Darleen Druyun's conduct with regard to her then-future employer Boeing. While I understand you are reviewing whether she violated the law by providing Boeing with proprietary information from a competitor on the day the Boeing tanker lease deal was announced, evidence of her extraordinarily close communications with Boeing prior to the decision suggests that you consider her conduct for the months leading up to this decision, including:

  • On October 12, 2001 (six months before the April 1, 2002 Air Force decision to award the tanker deal to Boeing) Boeing executives report, "Darleen will make the actual contract favorable and is willing to go to the financial (sic) market with us to stress the low risk involved in such a lease..."

  • According to an October 17, 2001 email between Boeing executives, then-Air Force official Druyun instructed her Air Force colleagues to inform only former Senate Appropriations Chief of Staff Steve Cortese of its negotiations with Boeing regarding the tanker deal. (In 2001, Senate Appropriations Chair Ted Stevens was the top recipient of Boeing campaign contributions in the Senate.) According to the attached email between Boeing officials memorializing the meeting with Druyun, she was concerned that the Congress would not support the lease deal because it would violate the Anti-Deficiency Act, which prohibits agencies from incurring obligations for sums of money that have not been appropriated by Congress.

  • According to the October 17 email, "Ms. Druyun did direct Gen Essex and Lt Col Pollock to take us [Boeing] up on our offer to meet with someone from the capital market (i.e., investment banker)."

  • A December 19, 2001 email suggests that the Boeing tanker deal is single-handedly being shepherded through the bureaucracy by Druyun herself: "(Sh)e is going to have a difficult time working this through air force bureaucracy."

  • Finally, it appears Boeing's claims that Druyun is employed by a different division of Boeing than that with which she worked as an Air Force official, are not clear cut. The Boeing press release announcing Druyun's hiring states, "Darleen Druyun... will report directly to James Evatt, senior vice president and general manager of Boeing Missile Defense Systems, one of nine business units within Boeing Integrated Defense Systems." According to the Boeing website, the 767 Tanker Program, as well as all the Air Force Systems projects, including the C-17 Globemaster are also run by Boeing Integrated Defense Systems. While an Air Force acquisition official, Druyun called herself the "Godmother of the C-17." I respectfully suggest that you review whether this is in violation of the Procurement Integrity Act.

I believe this behavior merits immediate scrutiny. Thank you for your attention to this matter.

Sincerely,

Danielle Brian
Executive Director

 

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