In remarks at the 2021 NIB/NAEPB Virtual Public Policy Forum, Jeff Koses, AbilityOne Commission® Chairperson, outlined an ambitious agenda for the future.
Before doing so, however, Koses, who also serves as senior procurement executive at the General Services Administration (GSA), said his first order of business was extending his appreciation and congratulations to NIB’s Employees of the Year for their exemplary service. “Although I can’t greet all of you in person today, please know that everyone at the Commission is very proud and most grateful for your outstanding contributions.”
Koses also saluted the “extraordinary response” from employees who work as part of the AbilityOne® Program to the COVID-19 pandemic “on behalf of the American people.”
Over the course of the past year, he said, they were often on the frontlines against the coronavirus, providing critical personal protective equipment (PPE) and serving as essential employees manning VA switchboards and supplying military bases.
Employees working in the AbilityOne Program “played a pivotal role in helping to keep the U.S. government and military operating during this national emergency,” he said. “You responded when your country needed you the most and can be tremendously proud of what you did.”
Noting that the pandemic is not over, Koses urged them to remain vigilant and continue their superb efforts.
Looking to the future, he observed that the AbilityOne Commission is fully committed to achieving equity for all employees and embracing a future of employment opportunities for all.
Koses noted that the agency’s goals and accomplishments are outlined in a special report presented to President Biden and members of Congress as well as key stakeholders.
Emphasizing that he intends to serve as both an effective steward and champion of the AbilityOne Program, Koses said he plans to engage customers and explore new growth opportunities.
Topping his agenda are proposals to boost federal services contracts for people who are blind or have significant disabilities; eliminate the subminimum wage; and forge ahead with more knowledge-based jobs. “These careers are essential in meeting the needs of tomorrow’s federal customers,” he said.
Koses was sworn in as a member or the U.S. AbilityOne Commission in May 2020 and elected chairperson on an interim basis due to the COVID-19 national emergency in October 2020. In February 2021, he was elected chairperson to fill a two-year term. As senior procurement executive for GSA, he is widely recognized as an innovative and visionary leader in the field of acquisition.
From 2008 through 2014, Koses was director of acquisition operations for the Federal Acquisition Service, where he led several Federal Strategic Sourcing Initiatives (FSSI). He also created GSA’s vehicle for integrated professional services, OASIS; managed 25 multiple award schedules (MAS) with annual sales over $22 billion; supported emergency acquisition; and oversaw acquisition for GSA Global Supply.
Prior to that, he directed GSA’s Office of Contract Management and played a host of both operational and policy roles. Koses holds a bachelor’s degree in history and political science from Washington University in St. Louis and a master’s degree in acquisition management from American Graduate University.