At a recent Subcommittee on Strategic Forces hearing on budget requests for Department of Defense Nuclear Weapons
Programs, the Commander of Air Force Global Strike Command (AFGSC), four-star Gen. Thomas Bussiere, highlighted
efforts to promote innovation and solve challenges within AFGSC.
Gen. Bussiere testified that AFGSC created a Commercial Capabilities Integration and Transition (CCIT) program 18
months ago with the help of Congress. The CCIT ensures that AFGSC can integrate the best and most innovative
technologies into their strategic warfighting arsenal. The program is an evolution of a Shreveport-based pilot initiative
led by two-star Air Force Gen. Jason Armagost. Under his and Gen. Bussiere’s leadership, the CCIT has worked closely
with BRF to bring technology solutions to the Air Force via its collaborative effort with BRF’s Entrepreneurial Accelerator
Through technology scouting and analysis, CCIT has been successful in pairing Air Force challenges with private sector
solutions, allowing startups and small businesses to directly connect with customers within AFGSC. Potential solutions
are assessed and validated for AFGSC’s key challenges. BRF’s EAP, a business accelerator serving innovative startups with
high-growth potential, provides financial analysis and business services when a company applies via CCIT to provide their
capabilities to AFGSC.
In its pilot year, the effort led by CCIT screened over 300 technology companies, resulting in over three dozen companies
receiving Air Force contracts totaling $80 million to research, test, evaluate and, if successful, adopt the companies’
technologies for AFGSC defense use. CCIT often utilizes the Air Force’s Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)
contracts program to put new companies on contract. Additionally, many of these companies, once on Air Force
contracts, can leverage their SBIR contracts to receive additional private investments to advance their work with AFGSC.
“CCIT, now an official AFGSC division due to the program’s success, will work to produce innovative, dual-use
technologies for the Air Force at an even larger scale,” said BRF President and CEO John F. George Jr., M.D. “One
example of its success is the CCIT’s work with Shreveport-based Outerlink Global Communications, which now has a
contract to bring their advanced satellite communication system, IRIS, to the B-52 Bomber. Another local company,
ARCHEM, currently with office spaces at BRF, is on contract to develop a non-carcinogenic fuel additive, which will give
the B-52 greater fuel efficiency and allow it to fly at higher altitudes, out of the range of enemy Anti-Aircraft Artillery
(AAA) and enemy hand-held Surface-to-Air Missiles.”
Since the CCIT program’s beginning in 2021, over 200 high-paying Northwest Louisiana jobs have been created by
companies engaging with AFGSC.
“At BRF and EAP, our defense mission is to build a regional defense industry cluster in Northwest Louisiana to promote
innovation and solve Air Force challenges while enhancing the economic vitality of the region and state,” George said.
“For every $1 of appropriations awarded to AFGSC in 2022 for this innovation effort, $3.56 of Air Force invested capital
went to companies generating jobs, research and economic impact in Northwest Louisiana for a total impact of $132
“Our partnership with the CCIT and our already robust network of innovative companies here in Northwest Louisiana
and beyond are working to ensure that the Air Force has continued access to cutting edge technologies and the best
commercial solutions,” said Dave Smith, EAP Executive Director. “The technologies we have already seen come out of
this effort, many of which were first used by AFGSC right here in Northwest Louisiana, are now also being deployed
across the U.S. Air Force and other areas for our nation’s defense.”