March 27, 2020 / Loren Thompson, Senior Contributor
Marillyn Hewson, Chairman and CEO of the nation’s biggest defense contractor, today announced immediate steps the company is taking to assist its workforce, customers and communities in coping with the spreading viral pandemic.
Acknowledging that the campaign to contain COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by coronavirus, will be a long-term effort, Hewson said Lockheed Martin will be guided by three priorities.
First, it will continue protecting the health of workers and their families, a process that began weeks ago. Second, it will continue delivering defense products to its customers. Third, it will assist communities and the federal government in dealing with what Hewson described as a national crisis.
The commitment to continue production stands in stark contrast to the pattern in some other industries. For instance, nearly all of the automobile assembly plants in the U.S. have slowed or stopped production. However, pursuant to Pentagon direction, Lockheed is working to sustain output of its military products.
To ensure that production of defense-critical items does not falter, the company is advancing $50 million to small and medium-size companies in its supply chain whose businesses may be threatened by the pandemic.