June 22, 2006

The Berry Amendment: Current Compliance and Enforcement Issues

This event has already occurred.
Venable LLP - 575 7th Street, NW
Washington, DC

On June 22, 2006, NOVA NCMA will present a panel discussion concerning current enforcement and compliance problems relating to the Berry Amendment.  Although the Berry Amendment, including its requirements relating to use of U.S.source specialty metals, has been in effect for some time, many defense contractors, subcontractors, and suppliers have recently faced increased and more rigorous enforcement, resulting in potential False Claims Act and contractual liability.  The Department of Defense has proposed policies that may enable contractors to better understand and comply with the law and DCMA has recently issued guidance clarifying how the Berry Amendment will be applied in some situations.  At the same time, however, Congress has proposed legislation that will extend and strengthen the requirements, and effectively negate some of DoD's proposed policies.


Nicholas P. "Chip" Retson
Acting General Counsel
Defense Contract Management Agency

Mr. Retson has over 34 years of legal practice and law office management experience in the fields of government contracting, contract disputes litigation, international logistics, construction, ethics, fiscal, personnel, and environmental law.  He entered the Senior Executive Service on March 13, 2002.

DCMA's 11,000 civilian and military leaders, managers, and technical experts help ensure Warfighter readiness through customer focused acquisition life cycle support and contract management services on over 300,000 contracts valued in excess of $973 billion.  Mr. Retson provides professional leadership for more than 100 civilian and military attorneys located throughout the United States and overseas.

Prior to entering the civil service, Mr. Retson served for over 28 years in the US Army's Judge Advocate General's Corps, retiring at the rank of Colonel.  His assignments included Army Chief Trial Attorney; and, Chief, Contract Law Division, Office of The Judge Advocate General, The Pentagon.

David Ricci
Acting Deputy Executive Director, Contract Operations
Defense Contract Management Agency 

Mr. Ricci's responsibilities include policy direction for about 8,000 operational personnel within DCMA in functions such as Contracting, Property, Quality, Assurance, and Engineering.  Mr. Ricci has over 20 years of contracting experience and served as DCMA's Contract Policy Director from 1997 to 2005.
Elaine Guth
Assistant Vice President, Procurement and Finance
Aerospace Industries Association

Ms. Elaine Guth joined AIA in July 2005.  Elaine is the association's principal liaison to AIA's Procurement Techniques, Legal, and Property Management Committees, and supports the activities of the Procurement and Finance Council. Elaine represents AIA on the Council of Defense and Space Industry Associations (CODSIA) Operating Committee and serves as project officer on cases of primary interest to AIA's members.  She has been actively involved in addressing Berry Amendment compliance issues on behalf of AIA's members.

Prior to joining AIA, Elaine was a Senior Attorney and Council Director with the Manufacturers Alliance for Productivity and Innovation (MAPI), having joined that organization in 1987.  At MAPI, she was the principal liaison to their Government Contracts, Law II, and Product Liability and Product Safety Councils.  She was also Managing Editor of several MAPI publication series and author of numerous analytical legal publications for industry executives on government contracts' issues, federal acquisition reform, government audit practices, corporate self-governance, and other issues.  Prior to joining MAPI, Elaine worked as a trial attorney with the Commercial Litigation Division, U.S. Department of Justice; as an attorney in the General Counsel's office, Naval Air Systems Command, U.S. Department of the Navy; and as an Assistant Attorney General, N.C. Department of Justice.
Rebecca E. Pearson
Venable LLP

Ms. Pearson has extensive experience counseling government contractors on compliance with the Berry Amendment and other domestic preference laws, including internal compliance investigations and voluntary disclosures.  She assists clients in government contract litigation, including: contract award protests before the Government Accountability Office and federal courts; administrative claims before agency boards of contract appeals; representation before the Department of Justice and federal courts on civil matters involving government contractors; civil litigation in federal courts involving government prime contractors and subcontractors; and alternative dispute resolutions in these forums. Rebecca Pearson also counsels clients on matters involving contracts including defective pricing and cost allowance questions, teaming agreements, and legal and regulatory compliance and ethics issues.  


Venable LLP
575 7th Street, N.W.
Washington , DC 20004-1601

Venable is located directly across from theVerizonCenter(formerly the MCICenter) at the corner of 7th and F Streets, immediately across from the Arena exit on the Gallery Place/Chinatown Metro station. 


Thursday, June 22, 2006
Registration and Networking:  8:00 A.M. 
Presentation: 8:30 A.M. – 10:00 A.M.


$20 for NCMA members
$25 for non-NCMA members
(includes continental breakfast)
All proceeds go to NOVA NCMA 

Space is limited for this class.  Please register for the seminar with Krystina Williams at kwilliams4@venable.comor at (202) 344-8174.  Please provide your name, title, company, telephone, facsimile and e-mail address.  You can also register online at the following URL:  http://www.acteva.com/booking.cfm?bevaid=113071

For additional information, please contact:

Paul Debolt
Venable LLP
(202) 344-8384

Terry Elling
Venable LLP
(202) 344-8251