The event, sponsored by the Federal Acquisition Service, occurred in 2010, four weeks after the GSA spent more than $800,000 on a four-day training conference in Las Vegas, The Washington Post reported Thursday. Both events were reported by the agency's inspector general, Brian Miller.
The GSA's responsibilities include providing equipment and communications for the rest of the federal government.
Betsaida Alcantara, a GSA spokeswoman, said the current leadership is looking for instances of mismanagement and referring them to the inspector general.
"These events indicate an already recognized pattern of misjudgment which spans several years and administrations," she said in a statement.
The awards event was held at two Arlington, Va., hotels. About 1,000 employees were there in person, including 49 flown to Washington from across the country, and others attended via Webcast.