William LaPlante will step down as assistant secretary for acquisition at the U.S. Air Force after three years of civilian service in the branch and transition to a senior role at Mitre, the military branch announced Thursday.
The Air Force added the Defense Department will reappoint LaPlante to the Defense Science Board to advise the department’s top officials on military-related scientific and technological matters.
LaPlante, who led Air Force acquisitions since early 2014, has managed the branch’s $43 billion annual procurement budget and helped the organization save almost $6 billion over the past three years through a “should-cost” management strategy.
He also developed a strategy for the military service to procure its future Long Range Strike Bomber aircraft from industry and oversaw the competition until the award of the LRS-B contract to Northrop Grumman (NYSE: NOC).
LaPlante served as director of Mitre’s missile defense portfolio prior to 2013, when he took up the position of principal deputy assistant secretary for acquisition at the Air Force.
LaPlante’s planned departure from the Air Force follows the announced January retirement of Heidi Shyu, the U.S. Army‘s assistant secretary for acquisition, logistics and technology.
Shyu informed personnel of her planned retirement Monday through an email, the original report from Inside Defense said.
She has held her current position since 2011 after a year of service as principal deputy for the service branch’s acquisition operations.