Document Services director retires after 38 years with organization

By Amber McSherry, DLA Information Operations

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Steve Sherman, Information Operations’ Document Services director, retired Jan. 3 after 38 years of service. He was recognized for his service Dec. 12 at the Defense Logistics Agency Executive Board meeting, where he received a Distinguished Career Service Award.

Sherman started with the organization, then known as Navy Publications and Printing Service, in 1979, as a management intern. In 1983, he became director of the Cleveland, Ohio, facility — responsible for all policy, customer service, and procurement and production operations for the Ohio area. A year later, he went east and became the director of the Brooklyn, New York, office, where he worked with major Navy customers in the New York/Connecticut/New Jersey area.

NPPS went on to become the Defense Printing Service, and in 1989, Sherman became the branch head of the DPS Plans, Policy and Technology Assessment Branch in Washington, D.C. He applied his knowledge to implementing 15 major automation initiatives, including the first print-on-demand system in the federal government.

In 1994, after another name change to Document Automation and Production Services, Sherman became director of the Business Management Division, where he oversaw production operations, the sales program and major programs such as Shipboard Copier, Cost per Copy, Multi-Functional Devices, Conversion Contract, DocAccess On-Line, Procurement, Purchasing, Combat Mobility and Contingency, and Internal Contingency. He also helped set policy and the future direction for the organization.

Sherman went on to become deputy director of the entire DAPS organization in 1999 and in 2001 became director of Document Services — now known as Data Management Services, under DLA Information Operations.

Since then, Sherman has worked hard to transform DoD from reliance on hard-copy printing to using digital documents in electronic repositories. Under his leadership, over 1 billion annual hardcopy prints have been eliminated, a clear cost avoidance for DLA and its customers. He’s also delivered over $500 million in savings to the DoD through various programs and initiatives.

Of the many changes he’s experienced in his 38 years with the organization, Sherman said, “The only time you’re defeated is when you give up. That motto has helped me through the years, and I hope that others have been able to learn that from me.

“You gotta keep delivering the mission in the best way that you can,” he added. “Move forward, and take care of customers.”

Natalie Coulson, director of the Customer Data Relations Management Division, noted Sherman’s impact on DLA. “Steve Sherman has a strong dedication to the DLA mission and employees,” she said.

“He has spent his career driving the DoD toward automation. His devotion and persistence shone through as he weathered many storms and challenges to deliver operational efficiencies and savings for the DoD.”

Sherman is a graduate of the University of Dayton (Ohio), with a bachelor’s degree in Business Management.

He leaves his career with many awards, including NPPS Manager of the Year in 1983 and 1984; Sustained Superior Performance Awards; the DLA Meritorious, Superior and Exceptional Civilian Service Awards; and the DoD Distinguished Civilian Service Award — the highest recognition DoD can award an employee.