During the Annual Conference we announce that year’s recipient of the Mazzone Award. The prestigious Mazzone Award recognizes the exemplary service of procurement officials to the public purchasing profession. Today we are catching up with Norma Hall, the 2019 Mazzone Award winner who discusses her career accomplishments and the importance of certification and giving back to the public procurement community. Her passion for public procurement was palpable throughout our interview and incredibly inspiring.
Norma Hall’s career in public procurement is the very definition of exemplary service to the state of South Carolina. A NASPO member for 15 years, Norma has served on numerous boards and committees for almost every public procurement association. Norma is a multi-award-winning procurement professional with a dedicated mission of giving back to the profession that she cares for so much. Read more “A Day in the Life: Norma Hall”→
It’s important to stay up-to-date on the nationwide trends for revenue and state spending. These trends affect the resources available for you to do your work and the long-term financial health of your state. 2019 marks the ninth consecutive year of moderate growth in both state spending and revenue growth according to currently enacted budgets. General fund spending for 2019 grew by 5.8 percent when compared to general fund spending in 2018. This increased general fund spending is followed by a projected 4 percent growth in general fund revenues for 2020 with a 3.7 percent increase in projected general fund spending based on proposed governor budgets. Let’s examine the current and projected financial situation of states further.
This week we caught up with Gary Lambert, the Assistant Secretary for Operational Services for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
Gary Lambert was appointed assistant secretary for Operational Services on March 21, 2011. Prior to this appointment, Gary held a number of leadership positions over his 30-plus years in the public and private sector. During his tenure at the Operational Services Division (OSD), Gary and his leadership team have executed a number of programmatic and organizational changes focused on outcomes that benefit OSD’s customers through the use of The 4 Disciplines of Execution. Gary served as an advisor to the TechAmerica Foundation’s State & Local Government Cloud Commission, and he is a member and past president of the National Association of State Procurement Officials (NASPO).
Mr. Lambert is a graduate of Suffolk University with a Bachelor of Science in Political Science and a recipient of NASPO’s Giulio Mazzone Distinguished Service Award in 1998.
In the past twelve months, what significant challenges has your procurement office faced? Have you had internal conversation about the struggle to replace a retirement-age workforce? Did you have to adjust in order to overcome a supply chain disruption caused by a major weather event? Chances are that you have- and you are not alone. For every qualified individual, there are six vacancies in the procurement sector, and we all have watched the news as natural and man-made disasters like devastating wildfires have affected millions of people. So, what should you and your fellow procurement officials do in the face of all of this uncertainty?
Approximately 30 states have adopted preferences for small or local businesses and 37 states also have “reciprocal laws” which add a percentage increase to out of state bidder’s proposal when compared to in-state bids. These local preferences can have a significant impact to a state’s economy. Purchasing in-state will not only increase a state’s revenue through sales and other taxes, but also have a broader impact on the local economy through the multiplier effect. Read more “Keeping up with the Economy: Local Economic Multipliers”→
The private sector has invested more than 1.4 billion dollars in blockchain since 2014. To put this number into context, this is on par with the amount of money spent on internet investments during the early 90’s! What do you know about blockchain? Personally, I knew almost nothing besides the fact it was a technology people were excited about and that it had something to do with Bitcoin. Luckily for me, Procurement U recently released a free course entitled “Blockchain: The Public Sector Big Picture”. This course provided me with a basic understanding of how blockchain works and explains it in a simple, approachable way through videos and interactive graphics. As someone who is not the most technically savvy, I can say that this course helped me understand blockchain and made me excited about its potential uses. This course goes over how blockchain works and how it can be used in procurement. Take this Procurement U course to start exploring blockchain and its uses in your office!