Have you seen this man?

Aerospace and defense journalists have launched a worldwide manhunt to identify the whereabouts of Vice Adm David Venlet.

Despite being named as F-35 program manager last February, and assuming the position last May, Venlet has been sighted in public only once — and that was in Ottawa on the same day that all aerospace and defense journalists were traveling in the opposite direction to London.

Two months after no-showing the traditionally joint Lockheed-JPO press conference at Farnborough, Venlet also failed to appear today at the traditionally joint Lockheed-JPO press conference at the AFA convention.

Moreover, Venlet has instructed subordinates to ignore all requests for comment by the press, despite sitting on top of a program that consumes $11 billion a year in taxpayer funds.

Despite sending numerous emails and leaving countless voice mails, this aerospace journalist/blogger hasn’t received so much as an “out-of-office” automated reply from the formerly professional F-35 government press office since attending a disaster of a media roundtable hosted by Venlet’s predecessor last June.

If you have seen this man or know about his whereabouts, contact your nearest journalist/blogger, and maybe we will finally hear his side of the F-35 story.


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9 Responses to Have you seen this man?

  1. Dave 14 September, 2010 at 7:53 am #

    You too huh? I thought they were just ignoring me… at least I am in good company. Now I’m not nearly as offended as I was before.

  2. Craig Hoyle 14 September, 2010 at 10:07 am #

    Hey, he sounds like Major Major from ‘Catch-22′. Start watching the windows!

  3. Anoynymous 14 September, 2010 at 2:35 pm #

    Sounds like the guy is off working. Which if he’s getting paid with my tax dollars I would prefer him working and not statusing.

  4. Amicus Curiae 14 September, 2010 at 3:38 pm #

    Adm David Venlet: Chief, from now on, I don’t want anyone to come in to see me while I’m in my office. Is that clear?
    MCPO Towser: Yes, sir. What do I say to people who want to come in and see you while you’re in your office?
    Adm David Venlet: Tell them I’m in and ask them to wait.
    MCPO Towser: For how long?
    Adm David Venlet: Until I’ve left.
    MCPO Towser: And then what do I do with them?
    Adm David Venlet: I don’t care.
    MCPO Towser: May I send people in to see you after you’ve left?
    Adm David Venlet: Yes.
    MCPO Towser: You won’t be here then, will you?
    Adm David Venlet: No.

  5. J Hearing 14 September, 2010 at 4:23 pm #

    Actually, this is a good thing– he’s decided his job is to make sure the taxpayers get their money’s worth, not to shill for Lockheed or sell more airplanes.

    IMHO the latter behavior is one of the biggest flaws with the current acquisition system– the PM’s job SHOULD BE adversarial with the contractor– his primary duty should be to hold their feet to the fire and ensure they deliver what they promised, not to help prop up problem programs. The highest honor should go to a PM who is willing to say “the taxpayers are not getting their money’s worth on this program and it should be terminated”– when was the last time a PM was rewarded for that????

  6. Weaponhead 14 September, 2010 at 6:53 pm #

    If I was assigned that job I’d hide too. It’s like the Monty Python episode on the importance of not being seen.

  7. RunningBear 14 September, 2010 at 7:33 pm #

    I just checked and he is still a Vice-Admiral and the PM. The last PM we made a target of, was shot. Looks like this one is gun shy.

  8. Jetcal1 14 September, 2010 at 7:44 pm #

    In many cases, military progress/status reports bear an uncanny resemblance to the fable of the “emperor’s new clothes”. Adm Venlet might actually be rootin’ around and gathering some facts.
    His bio sounds like he’ll be able to understand the truth from three bags full.

    The Navy has historically sent in “fixers” after a program or a command has messed up. I can only hope that there are people tin the program that will tell him the truth as needed.

  9. RSF 16 September, 2010 at 7:59 pm #

    As the latest uniform in charge of the fighter program that put the term “sliding development schedule” in the book, this very smart man is in a bad position from day one.

    He has to hold Lockmarts feet to the fire for a fixed price that the US military can afford, while placating the air power moron in charge (Gates).

    As Mr. T liked to say in a TV show of the past, “I pity the fool”!

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