Skip to main content
The United States Army

Stand-To: Procedure prior to first light to enhance unit security, a daily compendium of news, information, and context for Army leaders.

subscribe today

STAND-TO! Edition: Monday, January 14 2013

Today's Focus:

Defense Coordinating Elements

Senior Leaders are Saying

We expect to help the [Pacific Command] commander to set the theater with logistical, signal and support capabilities, as well as providing more ability to conduct military-to-military relations.

- U.S. Army Chief of Staff Gen. Raymond T. Odierno, emphasizes that U.S. Army will leverage its capabilities to build partner capacity and strengthen military-to-military relations across the region.

Chief of staff champions Army's role in Asia Pacific shift

What They're Saying

The military has had the honor of being one of the most trusted organizations by the American public the past few decades, so we know uniformed servicemen and women - along with first responders - help bring a sense of calm and confidence during a crisis.

- Col. Michael Miklos, Army North's Region II Defense Coordinating Officer, with his team of defense coordinating element and emergency preparedness liaison officers from each service, worked daily with emergency responders in New York and New Jersey during Hurricane Sandy Relief efforts.

Extraordinary coordination, cooperation key to Hurricane Sandy reponse

A Culture of Engagement


150 Years: The Battle of Gettysburg: The American Civil War

January 2013

Jan. 21: Martin Luther King's Birthday (NO STAND-TO!)


Black History Month- Visit website: African Americans in the U.S. Army

National Patient Recognition Month

Feb. 18: President's Day Holiday (NO STAND-TO!)

Feb. 20- 22- AUSA's ILW Winter Symposium & Exposition

Today's Focus

Defense Coordinating Elements

What is this?

In the post-Katrina era, the Department of Defense incorporated major improvements in its planning and preparation for, and response to catastrophes in the homeland. One initiative was establishing active-duty Army teams within the ten Federal Emergency Management Agency regions across the United States. These Defense Coordinating Elements (DCEs) plan for, validate and coordinate DOD capabilities and requests for DOD assistance in support of a variety of events, including National Special Security Events, domestic emergencies and other domestic activities.

This mission covers a wide spectrum of support to include everything from response to natural disasters, terrorist attacks, Presidential inaugurations, and high visibility sporting events like the Super Bowl. These nine-person teams are rapidly augmented by reserve component officers and Noncommissioned Officer (NCO) Emergency Preparedness Liaison Officers from all the services at the regional and state levels to provide planning and to integrate service specific capabilities when needed.

What has the Army done?

Army North manages, supports and trains these teams. The teams are manned by officers and NCO's specially trained to provide Defense Support of Civilian Authorities. The Army trains and equips these teams with state-of-the art mobile communications capabilities, including classified information video-teleconferencing, satellite-based communications platforms, high frequency and 800 megahertz capabilities to communicate with national-to-local-level responders. Over the years, it automated the system for receiving, gaining approval of, and implementing requests for assistance, significantly streamlining the coordination and response time. Recently, seven of the ten DCEs responded to Hurricane Sandy coordinating lifesaving DOD capabilities to the northeastern states.

What efforts does the Army plan to continue in the future?

Through Army North, Army Reserves and National Guard partners, the ability to respond to natural disasters continues to remain strong and improve. The DCE's conduct engagements with state and federal partners, including DOD installations that may become a base support installation during a response. They train side-by-side with their interagency partners and with the Army Reserve and National Guard, and have greatly improved unity of effort. The DCO teams actively participate in catastrophic planning with state, regional and national organizations addressing hurricanes, earthquakes, wildland fires, floods, tsunamis' and the effects of a terrorist-led or accidental chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear (CBRN) event.

Why is this important to the Army?

As Hurricane Sandy showed, our nation demands a highly capable response from DOD to assist the local, state and federal responders in a disaster. The DCE's are DOD's first responders in planning for and responding to these catastrophic events to save lives and protect the American people and their way of life.


U.S. Army North Hurricane Relief Efforts

External Links Disclaimer - The appearance of hyperlinks to external sites does not constitute endorsement by the Department of the U.S. Army of the linked web site or the information, products or services contained therein. For other than authorized activities such as military exchanges and Morale, Welfare and Recreation sites, the Department of the U.S. Army does not exercise any editorial control over the information you may find at these locations. Such links are provided consistent with the stated purpose of this DoD web site.