Sandra G. Nugent retired from the federal government in 2011 with over 31 years in federal service. She joined the DSI team as a Professional Services Provider in 2012.
Sandra’s diverse background includes both public and private sector experience in the areas of law, fraud remedies (including suspension and debarment), government contracts, corporate compliance, federal auditing, and business management. Her legal career includes positions with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA); Defense Logistics Agency (DLA), Defense Contract Management Command (DCMC); and Defense Contract Audit Agency (DCAA).
Prior to becoming an attorney, Sandra worked as an auditor with the General Accounting Office (GAO), Department of Energy, and the Defense Contract Audit Agency (DCAA), respectively. In addition to holding these positions, she worked as a price/cost analyst with the Department of the Air Force. Sandra’s experience with the public sector also includes state government where she served as Acquisition Manager for the State of Georgia’s Purchasing Office, and oversaw the development of policy, compliance, and training of the state’s purchasing officials.
Sandra is the founding Director of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s (NASA) Acquisition Integrity Program (AIP), which has primary responsibility for legal issues regarding procurement fraud and other related irregularities, remedies coordination, and suspension and debarment. She played a critical role in establishing the agency’s policies and practices to address fraud allegations. Sandra served as NASA’s Coordination of Remedies Official, and in that capacity successfully instituted a dedicated network of acquisition and program personnel to ensure that fraud-related matters were addressed agency-wide. Under her leadership, more than 17,000 employees agency- wide were trained, and the Agency significantly increased its suspension and debarment actions.
During her federal career, Sandra played a critical role in some of the largest fraud cases in U.S. history. Under her leadership, NASA and the Department of Defense, in conjunction with the civil division and two U.S. Attorney’s Offices, achieved the largest procurement settlement in history: $615 million (including $565 million in civil recoveries and $50 million in criminal penalties) to resolve allegations of fraud in the award of NASA’s Launch Services Contract (the 19-Pack) and the Air Force’s Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle contracts.
Prior to her position at NASA, Sandra served as the Western District Fraud Counsel for the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA), Defense Contract Management Command (DCMC)), where she oversaw the Agency’s fraud program for all states west of the Mississippi, and played a critical role in coordination with the investigative organizations and the Department of justice in the prosecution of one of the largest “qui tam” settlements in the history of the Defense Department and the largest product substitution case in U.S. history. Sandra led compliance and ethics reviews of major defense contractors facing suspension and debarment from government contracting, and led the effort to establish a fraud task force within the DCMC to expedite the investigation and prosecution of complex interagency fraud cases affecting the Government.
Prior to serving as Fraud Counsel, Sandra was the Chief Counsel at the DCMC Van Nuys, DLA’s largest Area Operations Office. This was an organization that provided surveillance over 1,100 contractors holding 21,000 contracts valued at more than $32 billion. Before joining DLA, Sandra served as an attorney with the Defense Contract Audit Agency (DCAA) where she successfully established the first Office of Regional Counsel within the Agency, and provided legal services to the Regional Director, senior managers and audit staff on a host of audit and contract law issues.
Sandra’s private sector experience includes a position as Associate General Counsel for OHM Remediation Corporation, an environmental remediation company where she provided legal advice and counsel on government and commercial contract issues, business ethics, and compliance matters.
Sandra has a Juris Doctorate Degree from Southwestern University, Los Angeles, California and a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Business Administration from Dillard University, New Orleans, Louisiana. She is an active member of the California Bar and a member of the New Mexico, and U.S. Supreme Court Bars. She is a Certified Procurement Professional Contracts Manager (C.P.C.M.), and is an active member of the American Bar Association and the National Contract Management Association.