News: Employee spotlight - Darrell L. Montgomery
Story by Jay Townsend
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - Q-and-A with Little Rock District Contract Specialist Darrel Montgomery.
Bio: Darrell L. Montgomery
Position: Contract Specialist
Years with SWL: 5.2
Years of federal service: 12
Hometown: Tucker (Jefferson County, Ark.) Born in Little Rock
Education: Master's of public administration, Bachelor of Arts degree in political science, South Central Public Health Leadership Institute Graduate, Tulane University Arkansas Public Health Leadership Institute Graduate, University of Arkansas Medical Sciences
Can you explain what a contract specialist does and how important it is to the Corps and federal government?
A contract specialist plans and conducts the contracting process from the description of requirements through contract delivery while negotiating agreements through discussion with contractors on the performance terms. The contract specialist serves as a business adviser to the project delivery team. A contract specialist also implements contracting procedures to oversee and monitor contractor compliance with the terms of the contract to determine reasonableness and to negotiate claims and resolve disputes. The contract specialist processes contract modifications and contract closeouts.
What’s the most rewarding contract you’ve ever worked on?
The most rewarding contract I worked on was the new Veterans Affairs long-term care center in Temple, Texas, for veterans in need of such care.
Are you working on anything now that will have major impacts?
I served as the contract specialist for the Clearwater Major Rehabilitation Project at Clearwater Lake in Piedmont, Mo. This project provided for the construction of 277 concrete panels of a cutoff wall designed to strengthen the dam and reduce seepage. The wall spans 4,100 feet of the 4225-foot dam and extends as much as 195 feet deep.
You are very active in the community. Can you tell us your roles and responsibilities and why you chose to become a public servant?
I chose to be a public servant in an effort to facilitate or create better conditions or improved opportunities for others. A question that I consistently ask myself is, “Will it matter that Darrell Montgomery ever existed?”
I was elected to serve on the North Little Rock Board of Education in 2006, 2009 and 2012. I currently serve as the Board of Education’s disbursing officer, which means that all checks issued by the district must bear my signature and the superintendent’s.
I also serve on the Pulaski County, Ark., Juvenile Crime Prevention Coalition board. The board examines issues in relation to juvenile crime, recidivism, and other environmental stressors affecting youth within Pulaski County to ensure that these issues are being addressed.
I also work with the Arkansas Stop the Violence Coalition. We bring awareness to the senseless crimes occurring on the streets of Pulaski County and ask city leaders to intervene.
Is there anything else about you that you’d like the rest of the Corps family to know?
I worked for the U.S. Department of Labor in Washington, D.C., for nearly eight years. While there, I had the opportunity to appear on the "Matlock" show while they filmed at the Department of Labor’s main office.
In 2008, I made a presentation on “Health Care as a Civil Right” at the American Public Health conference in San Diego.